Hyderabad: Motorists in the state capital are at their wit’s end as the traffic police are issuing challans for jumping signals, though most of them violate the rule unintentionally as the green light suddenly turns to red. The timer mechanism has long stopped working in many places.
Several traffic signals in the city do not have the amber light warning. “What is one supposed to do when the signal suddenly turns red when we are at a good 30-40 kmph speed as in the challan photo as technically we are breaking the rule,” activists from the city ask.
“It is a total failure of the municipal department, who is responsible for these things in coordination with the traffic police,” said Vinod Kumar Kanumula, chief functionary of the Indian Road Safety Federation.
“The amber colour, which is the technical term for the ‘yellow light’, even though it is only flashed for about 4-5 seconds, can save lives. Almost all the signals in the city have completely stopped using the amber light. The global signals, red, amber and green, are available for commuters to understand the traffic flow and control their vehicles accordingly. With the lack of amber light, many get confused and either end up jumping the signal or halting suddenly, causing accidents,” he said, though the government has invested a lot of time and thoughts in the betterment of traffic signals, no such implementation can be seen.
Lack of manpower among cops leaves such technicalities as the only source to control traffic flow in the city, claims Ravi Teja, a road safety expert and an activist. “It confuses the public in that split second as to apply brakes or move ahead. Many accidents are reported in junctions due to such faulty lights and lethargy of the authorities to fix it. The department is least bothered about something that is so evidently wrong and can be clearly seen as a cause of concern,” said the activist.
“An average commuter would usually panic and worry about the issued challans and clear them without a second thought but one can counter file such things in courts. However, it is easier for one to shell out `135-`200 than to start a legal battle,” added Kanumula.
When asked about the missing amber light, additional commissioner of Hyderabad traffic police, Anil Kumar, said that the GHMC had given the responsibility to the IBI group, who won the tender about six months ago. “All these works are underway. The IBI group will be coming up with new signals and fixing the old ones for all the three commissionerates. Very soon, we are going install timers at signals as well,” said the official.