Law Commision of India's Report on Legal Reforms to combat Road Accidents


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Came across the 234th Report on Legal Reforms to Combat Road Accidents on the Law Commission of India's Website: http://lawcommissionofindia.nic.in/reports/report234.pdf

I'm also posting the report herewith in pdf format cause I dont know for how long it will be available on the mother site.

I request everyone to please take a look at it. Its worth going through and I think there is lot to learn and discuss on the report. There is even a glimpse into the position of laws in the U.K.
 

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350Z

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Thanks a lot for sharing it with us, Jalex. Definitely recommended for everyone to read once.

Drive Safe,
350Z
 
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I have been a resident in 3 countries and spend ample of time in 9 more countries (not just a holiday), where I was driving extensively.

The conclusion I have to come to is that it is the fault of the authorities in the first instance.

What politicians and law makers need to understand is the psyche of the human. An example for comparison is Germany and Austria. Both countries share the same language and history among other things.

In Germany the motorway does not have a general speed limit. In Austria the speed limit is 130kph. Guess in which country the people driver on average slower.

In Britain the speed limit is 113kph on the motorway. Does it save lives compared with other countries in Europe where the speed limit is higher? Not at all.

Speed limits are important in the right places, but not to an extent like on the express highway.

Having driven myself in India as well as used public transport and working in the automotive industries am not surprised why so many people die in India.

Truck drivers are a nuisance. They do not care about anything and use the roads with no logic in their driving style. The result is anger from many motorists who have to put up with their ignorance and cheek. Anger distracts and distraction leads to mistakes.

Going from Mumbai to Ahmedabad by coach on the way up the driver fought against sleep. Several times he was nodding of and regaining. At a speed of 100 to 110kph this is not a good idea. The replacement driver hit a traffic jam and decided to turn around on the expressway. He drove against the traffic for 2 to 3km, leaving the expressway just to join it on the other side and going at least 10km against the direction of traffic swerving over the three lanes at quite some speed.

On the way back the driver hit a cattle and just went on.

In Mumbai on the express or express like road was in the middle lane a hole dug without any securing other than the soil on the lane. I did avoid it while driving in the night.

In Ahmedabad I have passed the scene of an accident, where just a woman died in a scooter accident by not wearing a helmet.

Apart from it I have seen many cars that are technically not road worthy. One car I saw on the express highway lost the left front suspension between Pune and Mumbai. The driver was lucky not quite getting into the opposite side of the traffic because the central reservation was very wide.

For my experience the solution to lower the road accidents is the following.

1. Increase the speed limit on the express highway to 130km

2. Punish truck drivers heavily for reckless driving including driving on the fast lane.

3. Drivers that kill others in traffic should go down for manslaughter if it can be established that carelessness is the cause of accident.

4. Improve driver training and enforce it and establish an anti corruption force that is rewarded on enforcement quality.

5. Introduce sensible speed limits where needed.

6. Driving under the influence of alcohol should be punished heavily and the driven car be crushed.

7. Improve road quality and hold authorities responsible for accidents caused by poor maintenance etc. This should be be as tough as manslaughter charges where people die in due course.

8. Remove speed breakers as they are also concentration breakers and replace them with pedestrian crossings/underpasses over the roads and/or bring in traffic lights and speed cameras.

9. Introduce annual safety check tests for cars and trucks as mandatory. These should be logged on a central database and in case any car or truck gets involved in an accident the test place will be punished in the same way as the person when inspection a repairs are not done correctly.

A number of other regulations need implementing, but the above alone would reduce the death toll significantly.
 
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I'm also posting the report herewith in pdf format cause I dont know for how long it will be available on the mother site.
thanks Jalex

in agreement with drifter
what are the main concerns of highway police in kerala?

1. check if anybody is transporting wine/bottles in car.
2. catch bikers without helmet
3.catch cars (pvt cars only) crossing 70kmph on good straight highways.
4.catch (some )driver with alchohol influence and make pocket money only (100-500 rupee)

why so.

1.easy source of income
2.numbers of petty cases with them remains sufficient without any issues or pressure from top officials

most of the accident happen when people run out of time due to unexpected slow down on our indian roads. like
1.weak bridge issue
2.slow riders bicycles carts,autorikshaws on highway
3.damaged road
4.wrong position of bus stop (face to face bus stop when two bus from opposite side stops whole road is blocked.)
5. reckless or illegal driving creating traffic jams.

what they (police)should be doing strictly?
1.check and punish drivers riding on wrong lane or directions especially at traffic jams
2.catch and punish drivers doing rash driving (reckless )overtaking on buzy areas.
3.severe punishment against high beam headlamps night driving especially on buzy areas.
4.check pot holes on road and if dangerous place signboards of potential danger.
5.lousy drivers like autowallahs,towing vehicals etc should be controlled from highways or educate them for priority vehicals

(recently one motorbiker on nh-17 died being thrown away into nearby gutter . in order to avoid a deep pothole the car driver suddenly slowed and turned right ,biker who was behind him couldn't control hitting the car and falling into nearby gutter).



we all know. long list of 82 pages of report and a commission to deploy road safety rules will take 20 years to see something in affect.
rather if some basic common sense and prevailing laws being made strict much much could be done.
uk roads and indian roads are very different. the way people behave in other countries and in india are very much different so taking bits and bytes from other countries and implementing in our country can make things worse..
 
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For my experience the solution to lower the road accidents is the following.

1. Increase the speed limit on the express highway to 130km

2. Punish truck drivers heavily for reckless driving including driving on the fast lane.

3. Drivers that kill others in traffic should go down for manslaughter if it can be established that carelessness is the cause of accident.

4. Improve driver training and enforce it and establish an anti corruption force that is rewarded on enforcement quality.

5. Introduce sensible speed limits where needed.

6. Driving under the influence of alcohol should be punished heavily and the driven car be crushed.

7. Improve road quality and hold authorities responsible for accidents caused by poor maintenance etc. This should be be as tough as manslaughter charges where people die in due course.

8. Remove speed breakers as they are also concentration breakers and replace them with pedestrian crossings/underpasses over the roads and/or bring in traffic lights and speed cameras.

9. Introduce annual safety check tests for cars and trucks as mandatory. These should be logged on a central database and in case any car or truck gets involved in an accident the test place will be punished in the same way as the person when inspection a repairs are not done correctly.

Agree with all except,

1. Increase the speed limit on the express highway to 130km

^Dont agree with that at the moment. We still have a lot of things to do before increasing speed limits.

And among the other points you mentioned, The provisions are already there, But problem is lack of enforcement and implementation by the authorities, Coupled with senseless or ignorant people in power in places. We have good Statutes and Acts, But punishment as in Imprisonment is virtually non existent. The fines also need to be increased ten fold for all offences at the minimum.

I still have not seen a person go behind bars for an offence such as and when the law says:

"Section 338. Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or
personal safety of others. “Whoever causes grievous hurt to any
person by doing any act so rashly or negligently as to endanger
human life, or the personal safety of others, shall be punished with
imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to
two years, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees,
or with both.


What you need to know here is that 'Grievous hurt' will remain as the major offence for the convicted person here, even when a victim in an accident is merely breathing and is just about alive for the rest of his life. He can be in a condition where he can't do a single thing on his own and is totally wasted forever with no hope left for improvement.

There is of course provision for imprisonment, But since law says 'of either description' and 'or with fine' its not compulsory, that the convict has to undergo imprisonment and our courts are always lenient, They are trained to be lenient and the exception where the verdict stands in favour for 'or with both' where in, the convict goes behind bars never happens when they are charged with Section 338 of the Penal Code.

I've still have to hear about someone doing at least a day's Imprisonment for the above said offence and conviction.

In order to change that we need to start from giving a hard knock on the heads of the politicians and changing the way we run things here.

thanks Jalex



what they (police)should be doing strictly?
1.check and punish drivers riding on wrong lane or directions especially at traffic jams
2.catch and punish drivers doing rash driving (reckless )overtaking on buzy areas.
3.severe punishment against high beam headlamps night driving especially on buzy areas.
4.check pot holes on road and if dangerous place signboards of potential danger.
5.lousy drivers like autowallahs,towing vehicals etc should be controlled from highways or educate them for priority vehicals

(recently one motorbiker on nh-17 died being thrown away into nearby gutter . in order to avoid a deep pothole the car driver suddenly slowed and turned right ,biker who was behind him couldn't control hitting the car and falling into nearby gutter).



we all know. long list of 82 pages of report and a commission to deploy road safety rules will take 20 years to see something in affect.
rather if some basic common sense and prevailing laws being made strict much much could be done.
uk roads and indian roads are very different. the way people behave in other countries and in india are very much different so taking bits and bytes from other countries and implementing in our country can make things worse..
You are right about Kerala, Its almost the same everywhere else in the nation. See it is people we know, relatives, friends, colleagues along with us that make the Police to act like that. We are the ones who use our influences when something happens due to our fault and we are caught. Then comes organized terrorists in the form and name of Unions. These people can do anything and so cops close their eyes. What people need to seriously consider and understand is that more people die on the roads in India,than anywhere else- 14 every hour. I am trying all I can with my limits and imperfections to do what I can to see a light at the end of the tunnel. I request all to do the same. Together we can start a fire, so what are we waiting for?
 
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One more thing Jayadev. In my opinion a report with just 82 pages in all is not ample for an in depth study into whats wrong and what has to be done to make things right on the roads. Cause its about a country with a population of over 1,210,000,000 people, (according to the preliminary results of the 15th Census.) along with a vehicle population of 89,618,000 as on march of 2006(I dont have the latest figures yet.).

We in our profession for instance, read more pages just for a seemingly miniscule matter at court.
 
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i have lot of known people ,whom i cannot stop. whom drive under sever alchohol influence..they just laugh at me when i advice not to drive.

drink and drive is act of courage and great credibility for most people around in kerala.

who can stop them??
 
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@ jalex - I do understand where you are coming from not agreeing with my first point. However, the reason why we do not agree is that I have seen in my professional career in automotive engineering (doing this by the end of the year for 32 years) the effects of limiting extremely.

I personally find it rather aggrevating to be tied to a stupid speed limit when road conditions allow more. I am not the only one. And this emotional/mental effect is laying the foundation for bad driving as well as driving with loss of attention.

Also it is noteworthy to mention thsat it is an accepted fact that people die in accidents from 8kph.

Of course the speed increase can't be done as a single measure. However, it will have positive effects on road safety when implemented in the right spaces.

What we as motorists have to do is to form a lobby. Forums are very powerful.

Also we are paying taxes. We pay politicians to do jobs they aren't doing. I consider this an insult on us people. What the prime minister forgets is that he is the prime minister = the first servant. Where is he the first servant when he only exploits us?

The authorities are made of civil servants. A police chief is a servant not a dictator.

In our terms we have to tell the departments:

No dough - no show.

We all together have the right to sack any government and any authority that does not work to the promises and duties they have.

Once this is employed the authorities will have no more power to manipulate the system.

I have taken on the authorities in my district a number of times, which resulted in the following years in being well known not mess with me unless the civil servant wants to loose the job and possibly getting legal action taken against.

Currently I am taking on a judge, who at the moment thinks he is getting away. He won't because people power is strong.

Let's look at it this way. Then we will not be taken for a ride any longer. Authorities are only as strong as the people they employ. We are more people who can force them to do what they signed their contracts for.
 
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Just to add onj to my last post.

This is not a political discussion on my part rather than looking at it from the commercial point of view as I would not being happy with my dealer, supermarket, mechanic etc. and act accordingly.
 
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@ jalex - I do understand where you are coming from not agreeing with my first point. However, the reason why we do not agree is that I have seen in my professional career in automotive engineering (doing this by the end of the year for 32 years) the effects of limiting extremely.

I personally find it rather aggrevating to be tied to a stupid speed limit when road conditions allow more. I am not the only one. And this emotional/mental effect is laying the foundation for bad driving as well as driving with loss of attention.

Also it is noteworthy to mention thsat it is an accepted fact that people die in accidents from 8kph.

Of course the speed increase can't be done as a single measure. However, it will have positive effects on road safety when implemented in the right spaces.

What we as motorists have to do is to form a lobby. Forums are very powerful.

Also we are paying taxes. We pay politicians to do jobs they aren't doing. I consider this an insult on us people. What the prime minister forgets is that he is the prime minister = the first servant. Where is he the first servant when he only exploits us?

The authorities are made of civil servants. A police chief is a servant not a dictator.

In our terms we have to tell the departments:

No dough - no show.

We all together have the right to sack any government and any authority that does not work to the promises and duties they have.

Once this is employed the authorities will have no more power to manipulate the system.

I have taken on the authorities in my district a number of times, which resulted in the following years in being well known not mess with me unless the civil servant wants to loose the job and possibly getting legal action taken against.

Currently I am taking on a judge, who at the moment thinks he is getting away. He won't because people power is strong.

Let's look at it this way. Then we will not be taken for a ride any longer. Authorities are only as strong as the people they employ. We are more people who can force them to do what they signed their contracts for.
I'm sorry but I do not have any back ground in engineering and hence can't comment on things on that ground. What I do have is legal experience and 15 years of Motorsport experience on and off the tracks at the National level here in India, I understand what speed can do, The whole nine yards of it.

8 Kmph may kill a person but chances are slim, very slim.

Our Roads infrastructure is too complicated and under equipped and most of the problems we have is due to lack of roads in comparison to number of vehicles. I also can't completely agree with your theory, Its okay abroad and what works in Deutschland need not work here. People drive crazy here probably when they get stuck in traffic and try catching up on lost time when the road opens and not cause they can't do speeds in excess of 100kmph.

What we need are roads and even if we start building tonight, It still will take close to a decade to get there. We are not made up of hard working Japanese you see.

And people in my line of work, along side Police and Doctors are those who look into and deal with people after they involve in an R.T.A. It is us people that investigate on the incident and cross examine the facts. We have a lot of things to sort in this country before going out and increase speed limits.

And about Politicians, bureaucrats and the likes. We ourselves are them, cause we made them what they are, Do you think none of us contributed in any way and that they were all like that from birth? And corruption does exist in many countries as well as the U.S, try fighting the big ones in U.S, They will put a 'Classified Label' on the file or matter you were trying to bring out and throw you in jail, and thats all the liberty you get there.

I know what fighting the system is, For that I just use my rights. Nothing more. Sometimes I've even get kickbacks while at it, No serious troubles till date though, thank God.

The following two videos in the links below will make you understand why I am against increasing speed limits at the moment. And I just said at the moment not for always. You for instance may drive a well maintained vehicle at 120kmph safely if the limits are such like you said, But what about the guy who is doing the same in the other lane alongside you on a puny hatch with a retread on his wheel? He will take you down with him probably when he careens into you after a blow out.



http://www.theautomotiveindia.com/f...asic-guide-road-safety-india-2.html#post89075

http://www.theautomotiveindia.com/f...ast-have-you-gone-your-ride-17.html#post89518
 
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Just to add onj to my last post.

This is not a political discussion on my part rather than looking at it from the commercial point of view as I would not being happy with my dealer, supermarket, mechanic etc. and act accordingly.
This is not a political discussion on my part rather than looking at it from the commercial point of view

Might not be for you as of interests, But for the rest of the country it is, Cause to change the speed limit or any other existing law or statute, Pressure has to be upon the politicians to start the process for it and it is the parliament alone that has the power to make or amend laws in this country.

as I would not being happy with my dealer, supermarket, mechanic etc. and act accordingly.

I beg your pardon, But I did not get you there? Could you add some more detail?
 
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What I meant with your second quote was that a politician and a dealer representative or mechanic will be treated the same way by myself. If I am not happy I will act on them the same way.

Regarding the other comments:

I do agree with you in most. It is certainly not in my interest to have a dispute. Neither would I think that Germans are better than anyone else. We just seem not to get away with anything.

I also agree that we are part of the system and everyone tries to get the best deal. My experience tells me that sometimes trying to get the best deals leaves us with the worst. Road safety is a concern for all of us as it can hit us as any of our loved ones.

What I want to encourage is people to look at the situation and slowly work to where we should be for our own good. One thing is for sure. Politicians know very well how to use our complecency. Unfortunately the abuse of their position does not help reducing the lifes lost. This we seem to need taking in our own hands. Even if we only look at it for our own benefit, we always could be the next fatality.
 
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What I meant with your second quote was that a politician and a dealer representative or mechanic will be treated the same way by myself. If I am not happy I will act on them the same way.

Regarding the other comments:

I do agree with you in most. It is certainly not in my interest to have a dispute. Neither would I think that Germans are better than anyone else. We just seem not to get away with anything.

I also agree that we are part of the system and everyone tries to get the best deal. My experience tells me that sometimes trying to get the best deals leaves us with the worst. Road safety is a concern for all of us as it can hit us as any of our loved ones.

What I want to encourage is people to look at the situation and slowly work to where we should be for our own good. One thing is for sure. Politicians know very well how to use our complecency. Unfortunately the abuse of their position does not help reducing the lifes lost. This we seem to need taking in our own hands. Even if we only look at it for our own benefit, we always could be the next fatality.
Its not a dispute, Its an exchange of thoughts. I learn that way. Did you watch any of the videos of which the links I had posted? They are my facts for argument. When I say I do not subscribe to a view, I dont say that for the heck of it, But I do add facts and data to show why I take that line of thought.

In one of the videos. You can see a car which is being left with no option but to drive on the wrong lane, cause the left lanes were closed. The highway authorities haven't put any deviation boards to warn traffic on either side and watch how many close shaves they miss. If the car doing the wrong-way is doing 30kmph and another is coming opposite in the fast lane at 130kmph, The combined speeds in the event of a head on collision is 160Kmph. Will anyone survive that? Thats the security one has on a channelized four lane highway in India.

The same situation happens on expressways to which you yourself is a witness. And without fixing all these issues how can we just increase the speed limits? You haven't given me your reasons to that effect yet. Please enlighten me if you may, mentioning how we can increase the speed limits to 130Kmph and ensure more people wont die on the roads than what does now at the same time?
 
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In Germany we have quite a number of speed limits:

5, 20, 30 50, 60, 80, 100 and 120kph.

The motorways are in general without speed restriction. However, due to a number of reasons speed limits are partially introduced. On the motorway might be danger spots, worn road surfaces, road works, heavy traffic spots, tunnels etc.kph.

Additionally in fog it is now depending on how dense it is 80 or even 50kph.

Additionally more and more the motorways get so called traffic guidance systems, which slow down traffic in accident areas or in rush hour traffic.

The enforcement is done by speed cameras and plain video equipped cars.

Law enforcement is one important step to increase the speed limit safely. Education is another one.

In the European union tachographs are mandatory for every truck. Drivers have their electronic card (like a credit card) slotted in the tachograph that records the speed and times they drive. The law allows a driver to drive for 90 hours in 2 weeks time, but now more than 56 hours in a single week (this means in the second week only 34 hours). The maximum of hours on two days each week is 11 hours and the remaining days no more than 10 hours each day. Every 4,5 hours they have to have a break of 45 minutes. Speed restriction for trucks above 7.5 tons is 85kph (the tachograph has got a speed limiter integrated).

Fast lane hoggers and trucks going on the fast lane are often getting filmed and pulled over and fined. Regular spot checks get trucks banned from driving when deemed not road worthy.

Breaking down vehicles have to be removed from the motorway within 2 hours. Failing to do so is getting costly and might lead to losing the licence.

These measures take care of a lot of the safety issues.

I personally have driven on sections of the Pune expressway at speeds up to 160kph (the car run out of puff), which I would consider safe in some sections. What is unacceptable is that authorities can dig up the the roads and do not make sure that the areas are secured and speed restrictions are imposed when roadworks need doing.

There is a lot more to discuss than what can be written here on the forum.

Just one thing is clear to me. Politicians make rules and regulations about things they do not even understand. They should not be allowed to shape the regulations rather than a commission of experts (I mean real experts) that are independent of any authority.

And the media could do their part to force changes.
 
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