For more accurate reporting of road accidents, an expert panel has suggested a uniform accident recording format with different sections like location, road condition, vehicles involved and victim details, designed to capture all relevant information.
The panel, set up by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, said that police need better understanding of accidents so that data gathered by them from accidents sites is accurate and complete.
Stating that currently the police personnel fill up the data sheet according to their understanding and assign reasons for accidents as per their interpretation, the committee including from World Health Organisation, senior officers from the Police and Transport Departments of states and Health Ministry, said there are apprehensions that due to limited technical understanding, the police recording the data are not able to recognize the role of road engineering defects, the nature of impacting vehicles and other such technical details that may have caused the accident.
"As a result, these aspects that are so vital for ensuring road safety but remain unreported or under reported," said the expert.
After a series of deliberations the committee has developed a uniform accident Recording Format to be adopted by the police in all states and UTs.
According to them, the accident recording form has five sections designed to capture all relevant information like accident identification/location, road condition, vehicles involved and victim details.
"Section A contains accident identification details like location, vehicle type etc. Section B captures road conditions and features like culvert, gradient, pothole etc. Section C would capture details about vehicle - both motorized and non-motorized, overloading," said a statement from the committee.
The form will also have section D which would capture traffic violations by drivers and Section E would capture details about persons other than drivers involved in the accident.
"The form is simple and would be easy for the police persons at thana levels to understand and fill up. It also minimizes subjective elements," said the statement.