Kathmandu, April 23
The GoPro cameras being used by traffic police have been found to be effective in catching lane disciple violators. The Metropolitan Traffic Police Division had introduced wearable camera earlier this month with the aim of maintaining lane discipline on the roads of the Kathmandu Valley.
DIGP Prakash Aryal, MTPD in-charge, said, “The effectiveness of body-strapped camera is truly high and is helping wearers initiate evidence-based action against rule violators. The camera records audio and video data while on-duty cops perform their duties on the road. The footage can be used to ascertain whether a motorist violated traffic rules or on-duty cops were just harassing the motorist.”
According to the MTPD, it has already booked more than 10,000 lane discipline violators in the Valley in the last two weeks. Of them, around 500 were caught by GoPro cameras.
“The action camera ensures that not only the riders or drivers but also the concerned traffic cops are accountable to any wrongdoing or misconduct. We have got positive feedback and results after the use of GoPro cameras,” said Aryal.
The audio and video records of the action corroborate the rider or driver’s story told to the on-duty cops over violation of rules.
Similarly, the control rooms of the Metropolitan Police Office and MTPD have also been keeping close surveillance on vehicular movement in as many as 262 places of the Valley through CCTV cameras. The road dividers were removed during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit in August, 2014, following which, traffic police focused on maintaining lane discipline. Bikers and motorists are required to follow the white lines painted along the middle of the road.
According to MTPD, rampant violation of lane discipline was causing an adverse effect on the already deteriorating traffic condition of the Valley. The violators are punished with a fine of Rs 200, besides making them attend a one-hour lecture on the consequences of violating lane discipline. More than 90 per cent of road discipline violators are motorcyclists.
Of around eight lakh vehicles registered in Bagmati zone, at least five lakh two-wheelers ply the Valley roads daily. Most bikers do not abide by lane discipline and are always eager to overtake other vehicles. Such attitude of bike riders pose risk to road safety and traffic order, a study by traffic police shows.
A version of this article appears in print on April 24, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.