In an effort to reduce fatal accidents, the Cuddalore district police had put in place a slew of measures including the installation of solar blinkers, crash barriers and high powered flashlights across the most accident-prone stretches in the district. The measures have now paid dividends and has resulted in fatal accidents coming down by 21.25% and total accident cases by 3.59% compared to the previous year.
According to statistics available with the Cuddalore district police, the number of fatal accidents decreased from 527 in 2017 to 415 in 2018. The number of non-fatal accidents declined from 3,065 in 2017 to 3,048 in 2018.
The police prepared a database of accidents in the district over the last three years, including information on accident-prone stretches, the nature of accidents and the time they occurred. The police identified 71 ‘black spots’ across the district as the most accident-prone stretches.
A study conducted by the traffic police revealed that the Cuddalore-Salem National Highway, Cuddalore to Panruti Road and the stretch of the East Coast Road from Reddichavadi to Chidambaram were the most accident-prone stretches in the district. Majority of the accidents took place either due to lack of awareness or poor road engineering at road intersections and highways.
“A sum of ₹19.49 lakh from the Road Safety Fund was utilised. We installed solar blinkers and high frequency LEDs in strategic areas along National Highways to avoid mishaps and strengthen the road signalling system. The blinkers installed at Panikankuppam, Veppur junction, Reddichavadi, Cuddalore old town and B. Mutlur are visible from a distance of more than 200 m,” said Superintendent of Police P. Saravanan.
Steps have now been taken to install crash barriers and blinkers at blind curves and areas with poor lighting facilities in Arasakuli, Vadalur and Virudhachalam. The blinkers would slow down approaching vehicles and minimise accidents, he said.
Mr. Saravanan pointed out that over 50% of fatalities involved two-wheeler riders who were drunk, were riding without helmets, were triple-riding or were overspeeding. The police adopted a zero tolerance approach towards traffic violations.
As many as 2,37,298 persons were booked for violations of the Motor Vehicle Rules in 2018. This included 3,670 cases of overspeeding, 6,601 of drunken driving, 1,11,344 of not wearing helmets and 1,15,683 for other violations. The intensive drive fetched ₹3.53 crore.