Road accidents have emerged as a major public health problem globally, and more so in India where almost 5 lakh accidents occurred last year, killing 1,46000 people and leaving thrice the number injured, says a report on “Road Accidents in India 2015” launched by the Minister of Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Thursday.
With one of the highest motorization growth rate in the world, accompanied by rapid expansion in road network and urbanization over the years, our country is faced with serious impacts on road safety levels.
According to the report compiled by the Transport Research Wing, the total number of road accidents increased by 2.5 per cent from 4,89,400 in 2014 to 5,01,423 in 2015. The total number of persons killed in road accidents increased by 4.6 per cent from 1,39,671 in 2014 to 1,46,133 in 2015. Road accident injuries have also increased by 1.4 per cent from 4,93,474 in 2014 to 5,00,279 in 2015. The severity of road accidents, measured in terms of number of persons killed per 100 accidents has increased from 28.5 in 2014 to 29.1 in 2015.
The analysis of road accident data 2015 reveals that about 1,374 accidents and 400 deaths take place every day on Indian roads which further translates into 57 accidents and loss of 17 lives on an average every hour in our country. About 54.1 per cent of all persons killed in road accidents were in the 15 -34 years age group during the year 2015.
Thirteen top states namely Tamil Nadu (69,059), Maharashtra (63,805), Madhya Pradesh (54,947), Karnataka (44,011), Kerala (39,014), Uttar Pradesh (32,385), Andhra Pradesh (24,258), Rajasthan (24,072), Gujarat (23,183), Telengana (21,252), Chattisgarh (14,446),West Bengal (13,208) and Haryana (11,174) together accounted for 86.7 per cent of all road accidents in the country. Around 83.6 per cent of all road accidents fatalities also occurred in the top thirteen states.
The fifty Million Plus Cities accounted for a share of 22.1 per cent in total road accidents in the country, 11.3 per cent in total persons killed in road accidents and 16.4 per cent in total persons injured in road accidents. Mumbai had the highest number of road accidents (23,468) while Delhi had the highest number of deaths (1622) due to road accidents. Accident severity in terms of percentage share of 50 Million Cities was 14.9 per cent in 2015 as against 15.0 per cent in 2014.
Drivers’fault has been revealed as the single most responsible factor for road accidents, accounted for 77.1 per cent of total road accidents during 2015 as against 78.8 per cent during 2014. Within the category of drivers’fault, road accidents caused and persons killed due to exceeding lawful speed/over speeding by drivers accounted for a share of 62.2 per cent (2,40,463 out of 3,86,481 accidents) and 61.0 per cent (64,633 out of 1,06,021 deaths) respectively.
Speaking on the occasion the Minister reiterated India’s resolve and commitment as a signatory to the Brasilia Declaration, to reduce the number of road accidents and fatalities by 50 per cent by 2020. He dwelt at length on the various measures being taken in this direction, including steps like rectifying black spots, incorporating engineering solutions at the design stage, safety standards for automobiles, proper trauma care and generating public awareness.
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