There are many in India who don’t acknowledge a rule unless it can be broken. Sarcasm aside, riding triple pillion or without a helmet is not a rare sight on our roads.
According to the provisional data released by Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, road accidents have killed over 1.46 lakh people in 2015, a 4.6 percent increase from the previous year’s figure, this means we have about 400 road accidents every day.
Here are 10 common traffic rules that we tend to break every other day citing various excuses:
1. Blow horns near hospitals
Somehow, we always tend to remember that we are running late just when we are stuck at a signal near a hospital. As a result, ‘No Horn’ zones near hospitals often turn into the ‘Most Horned’ zones.
2. Speak on mobile phones while driving
…And it is not cool at all! Even when you replace hand-held devices with Bluetooth, talking on a phone while driving anyway interrupts your attention.
3. Never stick to a lane
When we have the steer in our hands and the accelerator under our feet, it’s all about speed and reaching our destination ahead of the set time that occupy our minds.
And the government’s rule of sticking to a particular lane while driving and maintaining a specified speed limit seem an obstruction. Look out of your car window next time you are on a flyover and you will find hardly anyone following this traffic rule.
4. Litter the roads
We all enjoy long drives and while driving, our favourite spot to throw our empty water bottles, food packets, and other litter is the road or highway we are traveling on.
5. Breaking traffic signals
…Especially at night. During the day, however, we tone down our ‘break-free’ instinct to some extent [in fear of shelling out money in the name of fine]. But during night, when the streets are almost vacant, allowing anyone to pass before out vehicle is a huge hit to the ‘expert’ driver in us.
6. Drinking and driving
According to the Mumbai Traffic Police data, as many as 7,884 cases of drunken driving were recorded till August 2015.
Even after the rule has been made into a law, there are still people who are regular sinners in this sphere.
7. Not wearing seat belts and helmets
Blame it on negligence or lack of awareness or over-confidence that ‘nothing will happen to me’, many Indians still avoid using seat belts in cars or wearing helmets while driving two-wheelers.
According to a DNA report, early this year, the Mumbai Traffic Police booked 15,424 people for not wearing helmets in a nine-day drive.
8. Not taking the zebra crossing
How many of us follow the zebra crossing while crossing the road? Hardly a few. We are always trying to sneak out in-between vehicles halted at signals or competing with a speeding one to cross the road before it passes by.
9. Cross traffic barricades
Instead of looking for gaps and crossing the road via that space, we often see people climbing up traffic barricades to reach the other side of the road.
10. Take U-turns at all odd places
Even when we become adults, we have a tendency to maintain the ‘rebel child’ in us. The result is clearly visible on any busy road where you will find people, mostly two-wheeler drivers, taking U-turns at that nook where he is not supposed to.
Sreya is based in Kolkata. She is a Senior Editor of Big Wire.