We have mentioned in many of our articles that Indian roads are extremely risky to drive on. There are people who drive recklessly on the road. In addition to this, there are other factors such as cattle, jaywalkers, and even stray dogs that cause inconvenience to road users. They often lead to accidents on the road, and according to a recent report released online, the number of people killed in accidents reached an all-time high in 2022. According to the data, 1.68 lakh people died in road accidents, which roughly translates to around 462 deaths every day.
This is actually a significant number. The Union Ministry of Highway and Road Transport of India is responsible for collecting data related to road accidents and deaths in all states and union territories. The Ministry has not yet made the data public. The ministry stated that the increase in the number of road accidents and fatalities is a concern, and India aims to reduce the number of deaths by half by 2030.
According to the data, India saw a 9 percent increase in fatalities compared to 2021. This is actually 11.5 percent more than the deaths in 2019 before the pandemic. A source told The Times of India, “Losing one life every three minutes is a major concern. In recent years, we have built or expanded wider roads and have more high-speed vehicles. However, such a high number of fatalities is unacceptable.”
Rohit Baluja, a Road Safety Expert and a member of the UN Road Safety Collaboration, said, “We will be able to reduce the number of road deaths and injuries only when we properly diagnose the problem and hold accountable those responsible for various tasks. That’s how countries like France have been successful in reducing fatalities.”
While we discuss people who died in road accidents, there is a large section that is left injured in such accidents. This is also another concern. According to the data, in 2022, 4.43 lakh people were injured in road accidents. This was around 15 percent more than in 2021. The country recorded 3.84 lakh injured individuals in 2021.
There are several causes for road accidents on Indian roads. As mentioned by the road safety expert above, the system needs to diagnose the root cause of this issue to reduce the number of accidents and deaths. It is very evident that many Indian drivers lack proper driving etiquette. Many drivers do not follow traffic rules. Many of them do not even stop at traffic signals. This is slowly improving as the police have started installing surveillance cameras at traffic signals. Many of them do not maintain lane discipline. They drive their cars or ride their bikes recklessly and change lanes without proper signaling. Strict action must be taken against violators and offenders to ensure they do not repeat their mistakes. Two-wheeler riders not wearing helmets or riding with passengers also pose a problem on the road. They often crash their motorcycles, risking not only their lives but also the lives of other road users.