Reckless in overdrive: Overspeeding claimed 6,196 lives in Andhra last year

Vijayawada: Road accidents killed 7,556 people and left 23,456 injured in 2018 in Andhra Pradesh, according to the latest government figures. Most road deaths occurred due to overspeeding, said the transport research wing of the Road and Transport ministry.

Call it negligence or thrill, overspeeding was the reasons for 17,440 road accidents and claimed 6,196 lives – 82% of all road fatalities – and wounded 847 people last year. A year ago, it had killed 6,768 people.

Gautam Sawang, state’s director general of police, said that the maximum speed limit on the national state highways in the state is 80kmph. But a majority of the motorists have been violating the speed limits, he said. “We are planning to procure more speed laser guns and interceptors to curb overspeeding on the NHs to mitigate the road crashes.”

In 2017, 8,060 persons lost their lives while 27,475 people suffered injuries in 25,727 road crashes across the state.

Motorists driving on the wrong side left 192 people dead, while 85 perished in accidents involving drunk drivers last year.

Road Transport Authority (RTA) officials say that focusing on overspeeding, drunken driving, helmet and seat belt can help reduce a large number of road injuries and deaths.

RTA official said laser guns fail to detect the speed of vehicles during night time. It is almost impossible to intercept overspeeding vehicles at night, they said.

There is no immediate solution to overspeeding, said experts, suggesting that the government focus on mechanisation and digitalisation on major stretches in the state to reduce the blood spill on roads.

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