Thursday, January 29, 2009

7 pm horror show on Bangalore roads

7 pm horror show on Bangalore roads

More than 50% of accidents happen between 7 pm and midnight, says a study

Bhargavi Kerur. Bangalore
Modernisation has led to a decline in the communicable and infectious diseases, but rapidly increased the rate of injuries in recent years, said National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS) in a surveillance study, supported by the World Health Organisation and Indian Council for Medical Research.
"The motorisation pattern has changed in Bangalore and in India, leading to an increase in number of vehicles on roads. This has resulted in more number of accidents-related injuries and deaths," said G Gururaj, head of the epidemiology centre of NIMHANS.
The motorisation index of Bangalore showed an increase from 164 to 310 over a period of 10 years. While the number of vehicles increased from 0.7 million in 1995 to 3.1 million in 2008, road deaths increased from 639 in 2000 to 1,100 in 2007.
"Eighty per cent of accidents happen on highways on the city outskirts and 20% within the city," the study said, adding that 53% of accidents happen between 7pm and 12 midnight. "There is a need for efficient measures for outer ring roads to reduce the speed of motors and also build safe footpaths and crossing zones," D Nagaraja, NIMHANS diretor, said.
Two-wheeler riders and pillions have been the second leading road-user category for both deaths (38%) and injuries (51%). Two-wheeler mishap deaths have doubled in recent years. Bangalore has 11th place in pedestrian safety index among 15 cities in India. As many as 550 pedestrians are killed and 10,000 others injured every year. Among deaths 1/5th of them were hit by cars followed by bikes (19%) and buses (18%).
Around 209 children aged below 18 died and 5,505 are hospitalised last year, and 1/4th of the deaths were due to road traffic injuries. The study warned that the death and injury figures will double in a few years, in the absence of preventive measures.
Senior citizens too fell under high risk category as 360 died due to injuries in 2007 and 2,643 were hospitalised. The highest number of deaths and injuries occurred between the age of 60 to 65 years.


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