Sunday, August 31, 2014

Road accidents involving children on the rise

Every alternate day we come across shocking news of young children dying in road accidents. This no doubt raises umpteen number of questions regarding child safety, children suffering due to no fault of their own and what corrective measures to be taken to avoid further such casualties.

According to the National Crime Records Bureau 20 children under the age of 14 years die daily in road accidents in India. The nearly 70 deaths between January 2013 and July 2014 are of school students. In all the instances victims were travelling in their school buses which were either hit by other vehicles or rolled down from the slope.

India has only about one percent of the world's vehicles but accounts for 10 percent of the world's road accidents. These stunning figures definitely highlight how grave the issue of child safety is in India.

According to NGO Save Life Foundation’s Founder & President Mr. Piyush Tewari school buses should come as a part of special vehicle like Ambulance unlike commercial vehicles. As this implies even a truck driver can drive the school bus which reduces the probability of sensitivity towards children riding in the bus.

Currently there are no child safety laws, few measures under the same would mitigate the risk:
-          Seat belts & helmets for child
-          An adult supervisor to be designated in all the buses who would keep a check on errant drivers

-          Drivers should undergo formal training and they would need to renew their licenses every year. These drivers should also be imparted training on First Aid in case of any medical emergency.

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