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Fasten your seatbelts,cops are watching

From February 1,the city traffic police will begin penalising those who are not fastening their seatbelts.

Written by Express News Service | Pune |
January 29, 2009 2:00:12 am

From February 1,the city traffic police will begin penalising those who are not fastening their seatbelts. This had been made mandatory in the country under Section 138 of the Motor Vehicles Act following an amendment in 2003,but few in the city were paying attention to the rule so far.

“We are appealing to the people to fasten their seatbelts. We have been spreading awareness through the media,especially through FM radio; the rule will be strictly implemeted from Sunday. A fine of Rs 100 will be imposed on erring commuters,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Manoj Patil.

The staff crunch in the traffic police force could hamper effective implementation of the rule. Even now,only a few two-wheeler riders in Pune wear helmets,which is also mandatory according to Section 129 of the MV Act.

“We will be concentrating on seatbelts next month. Let’s see what happens. We are determined to enforce the rule,” Patil said. “All major cities have enforced the rule. Travelling from Pune by road,commuters fasten their seatbelts as soon as they reach Mumbai or Hyderabad or Bangalore. Why can’t they do it in Pune?”

Many have welcomed the new initiative of the traffic police. “It is a long-awaited move. It could be easier to enforce compliance of seatbelts compared to helmets as the number of cars on the roads are far less than two-wheelers,” said Chandmal Parmar,chairman of the Railway,Road Traffic Management Committee,Maratha Chamber of Commerce,Industries and Agriculture. “Seatbelts cannot prevent accidents,but they have been known to save lives,” Parmar said.

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