Monday, 15 December 2014

Making Road Safety in India a Priority

'Two cops killed as drunk cabbie hits barricade.'
'18-year old Delhi University topper run over by a speeding car.'
'Noida biker dragged to death by a speeding car.'
'DTC buses cause 239 accidents in 5 years due to rash driving.'
'Hit on head in road rage, man in coma.'

Headlines such as these are a regular affair for us. Open any newspaper on any given day, and you will find news on similar lines filling up the city section. In fact, if I were to be brutally honest, I will say that there are times when headlines such as the ones I have mentioned above fail to leave any impact on our hearts and minds. We just glance through them - untouched, unmoved, indifferent - and move on to other bits. Or may be sometimes if the accompanying image is grotesque enough, we might let out a shudder or two, and lament about fate to the unfortunate victim in passing, and then move on. The point I am trying to put across is that - we just move on, we never learn from them. Do we?

No, you are wrong if you think drinking and driving is the only mistake one can do.  Or that besides drunk driving, speeding on the road causes accidents. Many other big and small negligences on the road can not just cause accidents but also cause great inconvenience to others on the road.

High time we learn some driving etiquettes 

Road rage, cutting corners, overtaking, unnecessary honking, jumping traffic lights...and yes, Yo Yo Honey Singh blaring out of those rolled down windows. High time we learn some driving etiquettes and make road safety a priority. Here are some steps that can go a long way in helping with road safety:
  1. Buckle Up! Always, always, always wear your seatbelt while driving. Even if you are just taking a short trip down the road. One cannot emphasize the importance of a seat belt enough. And now just the driver, ensure that everyone in the vehicle is buckled up!
  2. Indicate Your Intentions! Always use indicator to make fellow motorists aware of your next move on the road. But of course, use them judiciously, and not just to justify your sudden/rash decision to take a turn or stop in the middle of the road.
  3. Feeling Drowsy? Take a a Break. While on long drive, if you are feeling even a wee bit sleepy while driving, please take a short break to refresh yourself. You can also opt to go off the road and take a short nap, before resuming your journey.
  4. Do not drink and drive. This sounds rhetorical, but we all know many a gory accidents on the road were result of a tipsy driver behind the wheel.
  5. Keep that phone away. Many a terrible accidents have been a result of that quick and easy text/whatsapp message one wanted to send, or that innocuous phone call one wanted to take or make.
  6. Following lane discipline is another must. Many unpleasant incidents on the road can be avoided if people use some common sense and follow lane rules. If you wish to change lanes, please use the relevant indicator to let the vehicles behind you be aware of your intentions.
  7. Say a big NO to tailgating. Always maintain safe distance from the vehicle in front of you so that there's enough room between the two vehicles in case the vehicle ahead has to brake suddenly.
  8. Go easy on the horns please! We are a country obsessed with honking! Whether there is space enough to allow us to pass, irrespective of the fact that the red signal has caused the traffic to halt...we honk. One annoying habit we most definitely need to get rid of.
  9. Be courteous on the road. Since we all know good gestures on Indians roads are hard to come by, whatever little comes your way, acknowledge them. And yes, please return the favour too. This will help make Indian roads a happy, or rather a less angry place.
  10. Please obey ALL traffic rules. Yes, all. It's very tempting to jump that red light in the middle of the night, when you see that straight empty road ahead of you, and say to yourself - 'oh, how does it matter, there's no traffic at this hour,' but then you never know on which empty road another such vehicle, ignoring similar red lights will come down to meet you head on. 
There are several other measures that can help reduce unfortunate incidents on the road, but even if follow the ones listed above with diligence, it will go a long way in ensuring safe driving experience for us all. So let us promise ourselves to do our bit in ensuring that Indian roads are a safer place for us to drive on. 

While the onus of learning and following traffic rules and driving etiquettes to the tee lies on us and us alone, the Nissan Safety Driving Forum (NSDF) initiated by Nissan Motor Company Limited, has taken up the exemplary task of sensitising people about road safety measures. Under its Blue Citizenship CSR umbrella, NSDF works to build awareness of safe driving in India. Let's us hope that a combination of our own efforts and the expertise and guidance from NSDF helps us make road safety not just a temporary concern but a permanent habit.

About Nissan Safety Driving Forum

The Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., conducts the Nissan Safety Driving Forum (NSDF) in India as part of its safety driving promotion activities. The program began as an annual activity in 2012. In its initial phase it covered three main Indian cities – New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai – and since then has gradually expanded to several additional cities across India. This year, NSDF would reach 8 new cities – Chandigarh, Jalandhar, Jaipur, Vadodara, Nagpur, Chennai, Mangalore and Kochi. In addition to sensitisation of wearing seatbelts, NSDF also conducts live simulated experiences to understand how safety features function through a simulated car crash. A 360-degree turn over highlights the use of seatbelts, while sessions on road safety emphasises on road etiquette to stay safe.

This post is a part of Nissan Safe Driving Forum campaign in association with Indiblogger.
Photo courtesy: Zee News

1 comment:

  1. Perfect info. Accidents are increasing day by day due to so many reasons specially rash driving. The safety measures mentioned are really important. Thank u for the wonderful share. Your blogs are too helpful.