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Accidents waiting to happen

  • Published at 06:54 pm October 1st, 2018
SAFETY
Photo: MEHEDI HASAN

It is unacceptable that any percentage of commercial vehicle drivers continues to do their jobs without a valid driver’s license

The Dhaka Tribune and Democracy International under the Strengthening Political Landscape project held a conference where experts emphasized on the importance of political will, increased awareness, and strict enforcement laws as essential for improving the conditions of the nation’s traffic system.

The current state of affairs when it comes to traffic remains a problematic one: Accidents are frequent, lives are lost every day, and perpetrators often escape accountability. 

And the recent student protests demanding better safety on the roads further highlighted to what extent this problem persists, with road accidents also responsible for the tragic deaths of children.

It seems that a significant factor in the lack of safety remains the reckless driving exhibited by bus and truck drivers, who continue to disregard traffic rules and put the lives of citizens at risk. 

A major problem remains that most of these drivers are on the roads without licenses, and are uneducated, which makes them doubly susceptible to ignorance when it comes to basic rules and regulations of the road.

Indeed, it is unacceptable that any percentage of commercial vehicle drivers continues to do their jobs without a valid driver’s license. 

For any sort of improvement to take place, the government and law enforcement agencies must make that commitment towards traffic safety, working in conjunction with owners of commercial vehicles, with a clear vision to improving the overall traffic eco-system of Bangladesh. 

This means an active effort to punish those who drive on the wrong side of the road, run traffic signals, or inadvertently block traffic to either pick up and drop off cargo or pick up passengers. 

In addition, strict rules should exist which prohibit certain types of vehicles on certain types of roads, such as the existence of local transport on highways. 

It is only through a collective concerted effort by all stake-holders that any improvement can be made to Bangladesh’s traffic system, and the death toll can be brought down.