J Krishnamoorthy, former Joint Director, Institute of Road Transport, who runs R-Safe NGO to create road safety awareness, has been organising a candle-light tribute for the last three years.
“On Sunday, we held a tribute in three places across the city – CMBT, Sholinganallur signal and Tambaram Bus Stand, to create awareness. I have been working closely with college students, trying to create road safety awareness among them. I also conduct similar awareness programmes for corporate and unorganised drivers,” he said, stressing on the need for road safety awareness.
On Sunday, Thozhan organised ‘No More’, dedicating the day to remembering the countless people killed or injured in road accidents, by their families and communities.
Radhakrishnan of Thozhan said, “As per statistics, nearly 1.3 million people die in road crashes each year, on average 3,287 deaths a day and an additional 20-50 million are injured or disabled in traffic accidents across the world. A total of 4,80,652 road accidents took place in the country last year resulting in the loss of 1,50,785 lives and inflicting serious injuries on 4,94,624 persons. A majority of the deaths are due to high speed, drunken driving, violation of safety rules, not wearing helmets and seat belts, etc. The plight of accident survivors is worse. When our team met some of the families of road accident victims in Chennai, we found that most of them are educated youngsters and many are under 18 years of age. This is shocking, as this suffering could have been avoided. We are doing our part to reduce it by organising such awareness events.”
Bereaved parents and family members of some of the victims of a recent traffic accident in Chennai participated in the event held at Natesan Park. The NGO had listed a slew of measures for the government to act upon, including inclusion of road safety in school and college syllabus, implementation of safety features on highways, ensuring standards of vehicles (Compulsory Crash test, ABS and CBS brakes) to avoid accidents and emphasise the importance of abiding by rules and regulations of the Motor Vehicles Act.