GUWAHATI, Nov 30 � Aggravated further by the failure of the law-enforcing agencies, irresponsible driving has left over 7,000 dead in the last four years in the State, averaging approximately five deaths a day.
With law-enforcing agencies, be it the police or the Transport department, failing to do what is required, national highways, State highways and other busy roads of the State have witnessed over 20,000 road mishaps, leaving over 22,000 others injured during the same period.
While 4,653 road accidents were recorded in 2008, the figure rose to 5,828 in 2010. This year till August, around 5,000 accidents have already been reported on national highways, State highways and other roads. The deaths rose from 1,807 in 2008 to 2,256 in 2010.
While the Police department believes that one breath analyzer is enough to dissuade drink driving in Guwahati where thousands of vehicles ply at any given time, the Transport department continues to operate in its own perplexed manner to the utter despair of the common citizen.
�Apart from drinking and driving, one of the major causes of the rising number of road mishaps these days is the modification of vehicles, which makes them accident prone. Unfortunately, the Transport department, clearance from which is a must to get a vehicle modified, seems least bothered and has failed to keep a tab on the unruly lot, especially the bikers,� said a senior Assam Police official who did not want to be named.
�I agree that these bikers, who are mostly young, are giving a tough time to both the commuters and the pedestrians in Guwahati. We are taking steps in this regard. In some of the recent cases, we have seen that the driver in the periphery gets disturbed by the sudden sound emanating from the modified bikes which leads to accidents,� he said.
The status of the leading insurers also shows that modified cars are involved in more claims, not just in accidents. There is also a greater likelihood of the vehicle being stolen.
A Guwahati-based automobile engineer attached to a leading two-wheeler company, when asked, said that the manufacturers of any kind of vehicle design the bike keeping in mind the safety and the performance of the bike, besides the comfort level of the rider. Fiddling with the original design of any vehicle will lead to fatal consequences.