NEW DELHI: On an average 17 lives were lost every hour in road accidents in the country last year and more shocking is that nearly half (54 percent) of all persons killed in road accidents were in the productive age group of 15 -34 years, said a report released Thursday.
The report road accidents in India in 2015 released by Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari said that almost 5 lakh accidents occurred last year, killing 146,000 people and leaving thrice the number injured. There has been an increase of 2.5 percent in number of accidents over 2014. More accidents are reported in rural areas owing to poor roads.
The analysis of road accident data 2015 reveals that about 1,374 accidents and 400 deaths take place every day on roads. Thirteen top states lead by Tamil Nadu together accounted for 86.7 percent of all road accidents in the country and around 83.6 per cent of all road accidents fatalities also occurred in the top thirteen states.
In cities, Mumbai had the highest number of road accidents (23,468) while Delhi had the highest number of deaths (1622) due to road accidents. Majority of accidents victims involve two-wheelers.
Expressing deep pain over accidental deaths, Gadkari said: “Our two years of dedicated work and sincere efforts has resulted in not much change but we are committed to changing the scenario as I cannot allow this. My heart fills with immense pain. This magnitude was not killed in wars, epidemic and militancy."
Drivers’ fault has been revealed as the single most responsible factor for road accidents, accounted for 77.1 percent of total road accidents during 2015 as against 78.8 percent during 2014. Within the category of drivers’ fault, road accidents caused and persons killed due to over speeding by drivers accounted for a share of 62.2 percent and 61 percent respectively.
Gadkari said though the reports lists driver's fault for 77.1 percent of the road accidents in 2015, faulty road engineering is one of the major causes. He also blamed the UPA for doing away with several overbridges and underpasses on many crucial roads to economise construction cost which has lead to high number of accidents at several places.
India as a signatory to the Brasilia Declaration is committed to reduce the number of road accidents and fatalities by 50 percent by 2020.