Aug 6, 2015

Traffic training should be made compulsory at secondary school level: DOA

Delhi Orthopaedic Association (DOA) believes that for cutting down road accidents it is necessary to have compulsory traffic training at secondary school level; the association also plans to give a petition to Delhi Government in this regards. Indian Orthopaedic Association (IOA) has marked this year for ‘Road Safety’ on the occasion of “National Bone & Joint Day 2015”. DOA, Delhi chapter of IOA is running an awareness campaign to highlight menace associated with road accidents. Association is placing road safety awareness posters in doctor’s clinics & hospitals and plan to visit Road Transport Offices to propagate best practices amongst learner licensees. DOA will also be running a school program to educate the kids about road safety and first aid.

About 1.2 million Indians were killed in car accidents over the past decade, on average one every four minutes, while 5.5 million were seriously injured. Road deaths in many global emerging markets have dipped even as vehicle sales rose; Indian fatalities have alarmingly shot up by half in the last 10 years. Deaths in road accidents in the country are the highest despite the fact that its population is much less than neighboring China and more vehicles ply on US roads than India. Road traffic injuries were the ninth leading cause of deaths in 2004 and at the current rates, the ministry said, it would be the fifth leading cause of death overtaking diabetes and HIV/AIDS by 2030.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Anmol Maria, President, Delhi Orthopaedic Association said, “IOA has been celebrating Bone & Joint day since 2012 with the slogan ‘Stronger Bones Stronger India’. This is not a celebration, but an opportunity to sensitize society, about the health impact of musculoskeletal ailments and promote their prevention and treatment. The theme this year is Road Safety Awareness because of the alarming figures of death and disability due to RTA which places a huge economic and social strain on the family as well the society at large. Data suggest that on Indian roads, there is one serious injury every minute and one death every 4 minutes. Delhi stands dubiously distinct with highest number of traffic accident related deaths amongst all cities in India. Public awakening at large is the only way forward for the prevention of this malady.”

Road transport shares 4.8% of economical contribution towards GDP in India but the loss to the Indian economy due to fatalities and accident injuries is estimated at 3 per cent of GDP. On top of that, more than 52 per cent of road victims in India are in the age group of 25-65 years. Pedestrians, bicycle and two wheelers account for around 39 per cent of the fatalities.

Sharing data on road accidents, Dr Dhananjay Gupta, Secretary, Delhi Orthopaedic Association said, “Last year 2199 fatalities were attributable to road accidents in Delhi, which is highest amongst all cities in India. Compared to last year, there is 3% rise in fatalities in Ghaziabad area alone. In NCR age group affected the most unfortunately is between 15 years to 29years. Overspeeding accounts for almost 31% of the cases, 39% owe to careless driving, poor weather conditions claimed 3.2% cases and 1.6% cases account due to drug/alcohol influence.”

Alarmed by the increasing fatalities, the new union government has begun a five-year project to cut road deaths by a fifth every year, part of the most ambitious overhaul of highway laws since independence in 1947. Prime Minister has assured a road transport & safety bill, national road safety policy, & cashless treatment of accident victims which might come in handy in addressing or arresting current situation.

“Still a lot need to be done to avert road menace, a new mandatory traffic education system is required; both at school level as well as at license procurement level. People should be taught traffic sense, techniques and strategies to avoid an accident. Supreme Court has already ordered that the person helping an accident victim should not be harassed; this needs to be strictly implemented. In fact such people need to be rewarded as fatality in such cases can be reduced if the victim reaches the hospital or trauma center in time. In medical term we call it ‘Golden Hour’ and actually the period is more priceless than gold for a person fighting for his life.” says; Dr. Deepak Chaudhary, Director, Sports Injury Center, Safdarjung Hospital

The DOA is also focusing of school education program; members will be visiting to the schools in their communities and initiate talk programs for kids. The program will make kids aware about safe driving for avoiding road accidents. Members will also be informing kids about better road behavior to prevent road rage cases. DOA will be giving a petition to Delhi government for inducting traffic education as part of curriculum and hopes that it will be taken up by the government as a priority.

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