India is among the most road accident prone countries in the world responsible for over 7 percent of all accidents worldwide
By Neeraj Mahajan
With close to 13 million cars and 3,320,410 km road length-- the third largest road network in the world, India is among the most road accident prone countries in the world responsible for over 7 percent of all accidents worldwide, resulting in over 85,000 deaths and 250,000 injuries per year in about four lakh road accidents every year.
Over 70 percent of these accidents are contributed by commercial vehicles, buses and trucks, despite the fact that they account for only 5 percent of the total car fleet. The rate of fatal accidents on the Indian road is one of the highest in the world, 20 deaths per 10,000 vehicles, which is over ten times of that in Holland and the UK.
This is because buses in particular are an important means of public transport in India, especially in the remote areas and countryside where no airlines or even the fourth largest and most widely travelled railway system in the world cannot offer last mile connectivity.
With the rapid increase in vehicle population, Road accidents were also increasing at an alarming rate since the Eighties. Increase in vehicle population has compounded the problem as the limited road space now has to be shared by a large variety of motorized and non-motorized traffic.
Some of the main causes of road accident are: drivers’ fault (77.91%), pedestrian fault/ fault of passengers
COST OF ACCIDENTS:
A Working Group set up by the Planning Commission estimated the cost of road accidents, injury and other social costs to Rs.55,000 crore or roughly 3% of the GDP.
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