by Snigdha Raju
11:32am, 30th August, 2016
Anyone who has travelled on the Mumbai-Pune highway will know how beautiful the drive full of pretty tunnels and scenic views can be. They also would know the dire condition of traffic on the expressway during the rush hour, not to mention the rash driving of trucks. But can this very highway be called a ‘Death Trap’?
August 29th, 2016: Over the weekend, Drones have been used to monitor vehicular traffic on the Mumbai-Pune express highway by the Maharashtra government as to check the rising accident toll.
Image source : thehindu.com
Deepak Kesarkar had termed the Mumbai-Pune expressway as a “death trap” in reference to the large number of road casualties reported lately. If such a statement from the Maharashtra Minister of State for Home (Urban) himself doesn’t show the weight of the situation, I don’t know what does. On Saturday, Fifteen truck drivers were fined for cutting lanes after aerial photos were captured by the drones. 14,500 accidents have been reported on the expressway since 2002 when the road was built; 1,400 people have died in the accidents.On an average, 40,000 vehicles run on the expressway daily, posing an enormous challenge to traffic authorities.
What has lead to such a situation? The roads? The goverment? The traffic police? No. We are to blame here. It is us, the citizens who are the culprits. Be it the drunk truck drivers crossing lanes or a mere hormonal youngster crossing the speed limit. At the end of the day, we have ourselves to educate and to make just everyday judgements. Stricter traffic rules aren’t gonna help the situation, us following the existing ones will.
Image source : dnaindia.com
Let’s take a moment to appreciate the governments efforts, to look on the brighter side of things and not complain and crib for once. The Maharashtra government has not only taken a technological step forward by using the drones, but is putting in genuine efforts to resolve the situation.
On that note, the usage of drones can be dangerous. Kesarkar had recently said, “We do not have control over rash driving as the length of the expressway is long and there is insufficient police staff for surveillance.” He also said that using CCTV cameras for monitoring traffic had its limitations and hence, the idea of using drones was mooted. As the saying goes, every coin has two sides. And it is no news that drones can become a disaster waiting to happen. In that sense, it is essential for the government to take measures to prevent such a situation from arising in the future.
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Feature image source : indianexpress.com