News: The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has released annual report ‘Road Accidents in India, 2018’
Key takeaways from the Report
Accident, Accident Related Deaths and Injuries:
- The compound annual growth rate of accidents and accident-related deaths in the period 2010-18 dropped drastically and was the least when compared with the previous decades.
- Road accidents have increased marginally by 0.46% during 2018 with the year seeing 4.67 lakh road accidents as against 4.64 lakh in 2017
- The number of people killed on Indian roads recorded a rise of 2.37% to 1.51 lakh in 2018. A total of 1.47 lakh people were killed in road crashes in 2017.
- Out of total people killed in road crash deaths in 2018, 48% were between 18 years and 35 years old. Minors involved in road crash deaths were at 6.6% of the total deaths.
- The highest road fatalities were observed In Uttar Pradesh (22,256), followed by Maharashtra (13,261) and Tamil Nadu (12,216).
- Road accident injuries showed a decrease of 0.33% in 2018 as compared to 2017.
- In terms of accident-related killings by type of road users, the number of pedestrians killed accounted for 15%, the share of cyclists was 2.4% and that of two-wheelers was 36%.
Reasons for Road Accident Related Deaths:
- Over-speeding accounted for 64.4% of the persons killed. It was followed by driving on the wrong side of the road, which accounted for 5.8% of the accident related deaths.
- Use of mobile phones accounted for 2.4% of the deaths and drunken driving accounted for 2.8% of the persons killed.
Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act 2019
- It amends the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. It seeks to improve road safety through multifold increase in penalties for traffic violations
- Compulsory Insurance: The Act requires the central government to constitute a Motor Vehicle Accident Fund, to provide compulsory insurance cover to all road users in India.
- Compensation for Accident Victims: Increases the minimum compensation in case of death in hit and run cases from previous t Rs. 25,000 to Rs 2 lakh and in case of grievous injury from previous Rs.12500 to Rs 50000.
- National Road Safety Board: Provides for a National Road Safety Board, to be created by the central government. The board will advise the central and state governments on all aspects of road safety and traffic management.
- Registration of Vehicles: States that new vehicles should be registered at the dealer level and it will eventually remove buyers’ interface with registration authorities.
- Treatment of road accident victims: Proposes that the central government should develop a scheme for cashless treatment of road accident victims during golden hour. It defines golden hour as the time period of up to one hour following a traumatic injury.
- National Transportation Policy: Proposes a National Transportation Policy for ushering in guidelines on the transportation of goods and passengers. The Policy will envision
- establishing a planning framework for road transport,
- developing a framework for grant of permits, and
- Specifying priorities for the transport system, among other things.
- Taxi Aggregators: Calls for issuance of licenses to taxi aggregators by state. Further, they must comply with the Information Technology Act, 2000. It defines aggregators as digital intermediaries or market places which can be used by passengers to connect with a driver for transportation purposes (taxi services)
- Recall of Vehicles: It allows the central government to order for recall of motor vehicles if a defect in the vehicle may cause damage to the environment, or the driver, or other road users.
- Good Samaritan: Good Samaritan (one who lends help to accident victim) will not be liable for any civil or criminal action for any injury to or death of an accident victim, caused due to their negligence in providing assistance to the victim
- Penalties: Increases penalties for traffic violations