Hyderabad: In a move to prevent fatalities among pillion riders in road accidents, Rachakonda police, on a pilot basis, have started penalising two-wheeler owners if those on their pillion are not wearing a helmet.
Statistics on deaths in this regard are grim. Last year, two-wheelers were involved in as many as 21,594 accidents in the state, leading to 6,806 deaths and injuries to 22,265 riders. Cyberabad topped the list in the state with 851 fatalities, followed by 735 deaths in Rachakonda. Hydera-bad recorded 277 fatalities. In 2018, the number of road accidents was 6,051 and fatalities 6,603. Among those killed in Cyberabad area, 114 were travelling as pillion riders. In Rachakonda, the number of pillion riders dying was 36. In all these accidents, pillion riders suffered critical head injuries.
As a result, the road safety model that the Tamil Nadu government is implementing came under discussion during the first week of January at a high-level meeting on Road Safety in Telangana. Senior officials from municipal administration, urban development, transport, education and police departments attended the meeting. The meeting became necessary, as the state government has declared 2020 as the year of women safety and road safety.
Following the meeting, Rachakonda police started penalising riders if their pillion riders are not found wearing safety headgear. Police are legally empowered in this regard, as Section 129 of Motor Vehicles Act says a person driving or pillion riding on a two-wheeler must wear protective headgear conforming to standards of the Bureau of Indian Standards.
From January 7 onwards, Rachakonda police conducted a weeklong drive on a pilot basis, during which they booked 260 cases. e-Challans of `100 were generated based on registration numbers of the bikes and sent to owners of the vehicles. However, the drive was stopped from Tuesday for creating additional awareness within public on measures to be taken for safe road travel.
A police official from Rachakonda said, “We will take up this drive once again after creating more awareness on use of headgear by pillion riders.” Cyberabad police of the city are also planning to implement this rule after a publicity campaign.
Cyberabad DCP (traffic) S.M. Vijay Kumar said, “During analyses of accidents, it has been found that deaths of pillion riders are due to head injuries, which result because they do not wear helmets.”...