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Learning the ropes
Learning the ropes
Posts: 21
Joined: Thu Jun 02, 2016 8:55 pm


Post by pkaran » Sat Mar 31, 2018 8:44 pm

This is in response to the video being circulated in Facebook and other social media in which we see a KSRTC bus driver being beaten up: ... -1.2706175

Nearly 150,785 persons were killed in road accidents in 2016 across India, an increase of 3.2% over the previous year. Light, Medium and Heavy Trucks, Oil Tankers, Tipper Lorries, the monstrous KSRTC Buses on Kerala roads and several other vehicles are devil incarnate of “Yama”, the Deity of Death roaming freely about to seize his next victim in less than 4 minutes!

Any mechanism or device that is taking 415 lives every day after day would have been termed as WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION, but it has not happened with vehicles.

Licenses continue to be freely issued without imparting any serious driving skills or road tests. Even teachers providing driving lessons are not required to undergo any special training in India. I can stand testimony to the fact that not a single female driver holding a four-wheel vehicle has the courage and confidence to drive a vehicle on our national highways all alone and by herself the moment she has obtained a licence. The same is the case with the large majority of male licence-holders in this country.

Comparing a total of 1947 deaths involving Licensed Fire Arms over a 5 year period (2011-2015) or an average 1.06 Deaths per day with 150,935 vehicular deaths on our roads in just one year (2016) or an average 415 deaths per day, we should enforce a far stricter licensing regimen for vehicles than what is being followed for the licensing of guns.

Indians are known to be notoriously lethargic when it comes to safety. Scores of cases involving safety failures taking huge tolls and wrecking colossal damages are right before our eyes. I present below a few cases to exemplify:

1) Of the 803 railway accidents that took place in a 6-year period (2009-2015) involving 2373 derailments, 38 collisions, 349 level-crossing accidents, 29 fires in trains and 14 accidents on other counts killing 620 people and injuring 1855, a staggering 86.4% or 694 cases were due to Human Failures!

2) Closer home, we have the Periyar Lake tragedy killing 45 tourists, the Vembanad Lake tragedy killing 29 passengers, the Boat tragedy near Thettekkad killing 15 children, the Puttingal Temple Fire tragedy killing 111 people – all attributable to not taking safety seriously.

Accidents arise only out of unsafe conditions. Our Driving Schools should seriously focus on attaining a certain level of Driving Discipline among learners which should be the sole criterion for issuing Driving Licences.

It is high time we introduced the Basic Safety standards as well as Survival Skills in our schools.

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