Highway to hell

Hardly a day goes by without some motorised vehicle overturning, running over people, crashing into another, or plunging into the river. The frequency and casualty toll give no consolation, because what causes concern is not just the failure to cut accidents but the apparent inability even to maintain old records. Thursday night’s highway death of about two dozen picnickers in Nawalparasi district is deeply saddening but it is only one of the

many that occur across the country. The vehicles have jumped in number, along with the swell in the population, while the roads are woefully struggling to keep pace.

Traffic congestions and mishaps are the offshoots. Add to this culprits such as the poor condition of roads, drunken driving, speeding, overcrowded vehicles, issuance of licences even to undeserving applicants, and above all, the unenviable state of police checks and action against offenders – and the picture becomes unmistakable. Certain road points also hold fatal attraction for moving vehicles. They should receive corrective treatment. One does not have to go far to find a major cause of road mishaps – at what dangerous speeds many drivers, including motorcyclists, zoom past on busy roads, even where no pavements exist! On their part, many people on foot need lessons in traffic sense. The causes are already known but the cures require seriousness and sincerity.