Bhubaneswar: In a bid to curb deaths due to road mishaps, the Odisha government has asked all Regional Transport Officers (RTOs) and police to launch a month-long special enforcement drive across the state from Tuesday. Transport and Commerce Secretary Bishnupada Sethi has recently written a letter to all district Collectors, SPs, DCPs and RTOs in this regard. This move was taken following an exponential increase in road accidents and fatalities during the last couple of months.
It was the mandate of the Supreme Court Committee on Road Safety to reduce road accident fatalities by 10 per cent every year. However, the fatalities increased by more than 12 per cent during January to October, 2021 compared to the corresponding period of the previous year, Sethi said in his letter.
“Road accidents and fatalities are normally very high during December to February due to heavy fog and the picnic season. Hence, this period is of utmost importance from road safety point of view,” Sethi mentioned in the letter.
“Therefore, the government has decided to conduct the special enforcement drive for one month from February 1 to 28, 2022 throughout the state by the RTOs and police with the objective to detect traffic rule violations and thereby reducing accidents and fatalities,” Sethi added.
The concerned officials have been instructed to form joint enforcement squads in their respective districts for disciplining up traffic rule violators. They have been asked to conduct enforcement activities during night too.
The officials have been advised not to park their vehicles on highways during night hours, to avoid any accident. The secretary has asked the RTOs to submit a weekly enforcement report to the Transport Commissioner.
According to official data, a total of 8,922 road mishaps were reported during January to October of 2021, in which 4,074 persons were killed and 8,087 were injured. In the same period of 2020, 7,619 road accident cases were reported in which 3,637 were killed and 6,977 were injured.
Except for six districts (Puri, Nayagarh, Koraput, Deogarh, Kendrapara and Subarnapur), increase in fatalities was observed in all other districts.