Similarly, 21-year-old Dikshant Mhashelkar was the victim of a speeding ticket. A five-star hotel worker and the only income in his family, Dikshant was returning from work on his motorcycle when a truck collided with the bike in Goregaon on April 15. The driver admitted to the Mhashelkar family that he couldn’t control his vehicle in time. Seven months later, the driver is released on bail, but the Mhashelkars are struggling to accept their loss.
On the occasion of World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, celebrated on November 21, the two families want the authorities to encourage actions to reduce speeding and stop more deaths on the roads.
âRethinking the streets to prioritize vulnerable road users and reduce speeds is the most effective tool for reducing fatal traffic accidents. Globally, cities are lowering their urban speed limits through policy frameworks, law enforcement, street design and communication. There is plenty of data representing their success in reducing accidents … âsaid Abhimanyu Prakash, urban architect at Bloomberg Philanthropies for Global Road Safety initiative.
A 2020 report from the International Road Assessment Program, a charity, shows that 819 lives are lost every day in India, and the cost to the healthcare system, economy and families could reach $ 101 million per day. The report shows that 96% of Indian roads, where pedestrians are present and traffic at at least 40 km / h, have no trails.
Dr Ketna Mehta, whose Nina Foundation works for people with spinal cord injuries, said: âWe campaigned for us to focus more on preventing injuries and disabilities caused by road traffic crashes. . While bucket stretchers can be placed at blackheads and basic training is given to citizens on how to properly transport victims and evacuate [take to hospital] in the golden hour of traffic accidents, we could save lives. She added that several people her NGO helped rehabilitate had suffered spinal cord injuries as a result of traffic accidents.
For some of those who have survived a car crash with serious injuries, going about their daily routine becomes a daunting task. Rahil Shaikh (38), who became paraplegic after a vehicle collision in 2005, says he had to drop out of college and barely could find employment opportunities afterward. Shaikh, who is in a wheelchair, does not venture out of his Dockyard Road home on his own because âthe streets of Mumbai are not accessible to all and are very dangerous for people with disabilitiesâ. This is the same reason why he cannot take a bus or train, which limits his possibilities for work.
One of the goals of World Road Traffic Victims Day is to advocate for better support for crash survivors, says Dr Mehta. âThe loss of control of bodily functions in people with spinal cord injuries could have an impact on their mental health, their financial situation as well as their future,â she says.