I hear talks, about helmet wearing, speed driving, congested roads all cited as examples. Everyone is aware where the repair work has to be done. But there are small things we don’t ask, why do these accidents occur? Just look at our road hogs…
If you wonder what I am talking about go to any school area either when it is start time or closing time, you will find parents, manovering their vehicles, not really paying attention to the road rules.
In front of Aryan’s study circle in Goa – it is a one way, you have people on two wheelers going against the flow. The entry to the buildings are blocked by huge vehicles, not to mention, the double parking in front of any school.
We have next lot, the real mobile crowd, I call them “India on wheels,” the man ridding the bike, sans helmet, one pre-schooler in the front, the wife behind, with a baby in the hand, there are times I worry that the baby might just fall off mother’s hand. Oh! Yes between all this he answers his mobile.
Another firm belief that most two wheeler users have is that they can cut lanes where ever and whenever, indicators are not to be used, for it might reveal their destination. If roads are crowded then use the footpath..pedestrians…they don’t count.
Forget the two wheelers, and the teenager two wheeler roadies, we have the parents who refuse to grow up to them the one ways don’t count they drive any direction.
On one hand we need to set the city and its layout more friendly, and we also need to make the citizens of the society more responsible, this includes visitors to our cities. Getting into running buses, over packed buses, meandering two wheelers they all contribute to creating a disaster.
We focus on civil society, governments technology and god knows what to handle this . what is missing in the entire transport, and road planning is the fundamental need of the people, their anxieties, abilities , communities and the challenges that they face.
We need to shift the debate towards the central place of citizens in smart city design and to decentralize open urban infrastructures.
If we want our roads are to be safe, we need to make it safe.