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21Mar2017

Road Safety Tips for Different Types of Road Users

 

A historic move towards reducing the number of traffic accidents by fifty percent all over the world was taken by the 2200 delegates from various countries at the Brasilia Declaration on Road Safety dated November 25, 2015. India was a part of this key initiative which aimed to rethink its stand on the transport policies and to revamp them to favour sustainable modes of transport over other means. 

The key concerns are enforcement of road safety rules and regulations for the larger benefit of the people in a society facing challenges like increased transportation and lack of public awareness.  Road safety tips taken at the appropriate situations and by people can reduce the accident rates considerably. 

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Road safety rules and regulations have outlined the measures to reduce the risk of civilians getting injured or killed while on roads. Road users include motorists, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, public transport users, etc. 

1. Tips for motorists

The roads are built primarily for the transport of motor vehicles and the first priority goes to them, but not always.

a. Obey Road safety rules and regulations stipulated for motor vehicles at all times

b. Look for the traffic signs before you cross signals 

c. Drive within the speed limits prescribed. Ideally one should drive at approximately not more than 30 kmph near busy places such as markets and residential areas

d. Don’t forget to wear helmets while driving. Helmets should be ISI marked and buckled properly

e. Keep vehicle fit. A sudden breakdown of the vehicle while on the road can cause hardships not only to you but also to fellow road users and traffic personnel. Besides, towing a four wheeler to a garage for maintenance works from the middle of the road can cost you a lot. This can be avoided if you regularly check and take care of your vehicle.

f. Stop or slow your vehicle and allow the pedestrians to cross roads at unmanned / unsignalled Zebra crossings

g. Always wear seat belts while driving four wheelers 

h. Avoid rash/negligent driving

i. Don’t drink and drive. It can lead to death

j. Avoid using mobile phones while driving. It is not advisable to talk on mobile even when stopping at signals. Accidents are more common when motorists tend to ride fast at the signals when it turns green. They often tend to ignore the oncoming vehicles or the signal changes while talking on the mobile. In case you want to pick up an urgent call, park the vehicle to the side of the road and put the brake lights on, and allow other motorists to pass by. 

k. While crossing unmanned railway lines, be sure to think of safety first. 

l. It is ideal for taxis, school buses, auto rickshaws etc. which need to alight or drop passengers to keep to the left of the road so as to not cause discomfort to other road users. Also, put on the brake lights before stopping so that the vehicles behind can avoid a collision. 

m. Install GPS trackers and monitors. You can avoid stopping at every turns and asking for the right directions to other road users. Such actions can cause trouble for other road users and tend to consume your precious time and fuel. 

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2. Tips for pedestrians:

a. Use sidewalks wherever possible.

b. Always use zebra markings to cross the road

c. Don’t text while walking

d. Avoid playing games while on busy roads. A simple moment of distraction can lead to disasters. For example, the virtual game Pokemon Go has caused around 1, 10,000 deaths in the first 10 days of its release in U.S. With the virtual reality games coming up in developing countries with poorer road conditions and reduced enforcement of traffic rules primarily due to lack of adequate personnel.,  the numbers might still be higher. 

e. Jaywalking should be avoided. 

f. While travelling with children, hold their hands firmly and keep them close 

g. Teach young kids about road safety rules and regulations so that they can understand and follow them

h. Set the right example for children by following the road safety rules

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