Authorities said that they had seen an increase in instances of rash driving and overspeeding as roads remain relatively empty.

Deserted road in front of Vidhan Soudha
news Accident Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 17:59

Long periods of lockdown, put in place as a measure to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus between mid-March and May in Bengaluru, has not resulted in any drastic reduction of road accidents or fatalities, data available with authorities shows. As per the data, till June-end, a total of 309 persons have been killed in road accidents in 2020. The death toll for 2019, 2018 and 2017 were 766, 684 and 642 respectively for the entire year.  

The same trend can be observed for injuries too. Till June 30, 2020, the number of injured people is at 1,396 while the same for the last three years was 4,253, 4,133 and 4,256 respectively for the entire year.  

According to officials, while there is no major dip in the overall fatality or number of accidents, the accidents involving two wheelers stand out during the lockdown period.

A total of 44 persons have been killed in road accidents involving two-wheelers alone within the Bengaluru Police Commissionerate limits till June-end, from when the nationwide lockdown was put in place in March. Another 159 persons have been injured in accidents involving two-wheelers in the same period. A total of 166 accidents were recorded.

Traffic police officials said that the high number of accidents and related fatalities are mainly due to riders not following traffic rules, and increased instances of overspeeding on empty roads during the lockdown period.

Speaking to TNM,  Joint Commissioner, Traffic, BR Ravikanthe Gowda said, “We have reduced contact enforcement in the wake of the pandemic and we are only relying on non-contact means. But people are taking things for granted. If you look at most of these cases, they are due to the negligence of the rider; even those involving fatalities. Rash and negligent driving has increased. This shows the need for enforcement of traffic rules in the city.” 

Traffic Police inspectors said that due to lack of enforcement on the gound, the number of people following traffic rules like wearing helmets, maintaining lane discipline and obeying traffic signals have decreased, which have led to a majority of the accidents.

TNM had reported on June 21, how three youngsters had lost their lives after two bikes collided near the Jakkur Airfield as they were trying a stunt.

More recently, the police had seized a 1,000 cc bike after videos of the rider overspeeding on the Electronic City Flyover during the lockdown went viral. Bengaluru Joint Commissioner of Police, Crime, Sandeep Patil, had said that the Traffic Police in Electronic City had registered a case against the rider who had posted other videos of him violating the speed limit on multiple occasions in the city.

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