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Accident-prone ‘black spots’ to focal point of home dept’s month-long campaign

Along with black spots, these bodies have also been asked to repair potholes, conduct maintenance drives, take a stock of existing signage. Repair of road medians, putting up new information boards is also part of the drive.

By: Express News Service | Pune |
January 19, 2021 12:29:40 am
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THE HOME department has launched a road safety campaign for a month starting Monday. Among different initiatives under the multi-agency campaign is identification and corrective measures at accident-prone sites and various awareness drives.

The awareness campaign will run across the state from Monday till February 17, with a theme ‘Sadak suraksha, jeevan raksha (Safe roads, secured life)’. An array of government bodies like traffic police, departments of transport, health and school education, road construction entities, local governing bodies and educational institutes will conduct various programmes during the campaign.

Earlier, the road safety committees of individual districts in the state were instructed to chalk out a plan of action of activities to be conducted.

The offices of transport commissioner of Maharashtra and additional director general of police (traffic) are coordinating the campaign.

One of main focus points of the campaign will be to identify “black spots” on roads across the state and take corrective measures. According to norms set up by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and the Indian Road Congress, a patch of 500 metres of the road on which five or more accidents with fatalities or grievous injuries have taken place in three years, is known as “black spot”. The public works department, State Road Development Corporation, National Highway Authority of India, municipal corporations and councils and gram panchayats have been asked to identify such spots, reassess those identified earlier and take necessary corrective measures, including structural changes.

Along with black spots, these bodies have also been asked to repair potholes, conduct maintenance drives, take a stock of existing signage. Repair of road medians, putting up new information boards is also part of the drive.

Traffic control branches of individual police jurisdictions have been instructed to conduct various awareness campaigns, conduct workshops for citizens and students, review pending cases under the Motor Vehicle Act and conduct drives about traffic rules in their areas.

Speaking about activities in Pune, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic Control Branch) Rahul Shrirame said, “While the focus will be on awareness campaigns, we, along with other stakeholders, have undertaken a drive to identify black spots. The effort will be to take it to a logical end and ensure that it becomes a routine process.”

The department of school education and different schools and colleges in the city and rural areas will conduct awareness programmes and symposiums on traffic safety. Essay writing, oratory and painting competitions on road safety will be organised during the campaign. The department of health will conduct health and eye camps for drivers along with special modules for long-distance drivers. Review and, if needed, upgrade of ambulance services, setting up or restructuring emergency response teams is also on the cards.

Awareness workshops on concepts of “golden hour”, first-aid basics and traffic rule enforcement will also be conducted. Transporter associations, district information offices and Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation have also been assigned specific tasks for the campaign.

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