Scientific probes of road accidents helping save lives in India

A four-member team of scientific crash investigators attached with the SaveLife Foundation works to ascertain the cause of the mishap.

Published: 10th June 2019 05:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th June 2019 06:52 PM   |  A+A-


For representational purposes

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Official data says that India witnessed around 4.64 lakh road accidents in 2017, and they claimed around 1.47 lakh lives and rendered 4.7 lakh people injured.

Every time there is an accident, the police and medics arrive on the scene. The police file a case, and the medics try to save lives. The real cause of the accident is not taken into account.

A four-member team of scientific crash investigators attached with the SaveLife Foundation works to ascertain the cause of the mishap. The team has found that often human error is not the cause of the mishaps, and engineering faults and design faults, among other reasons, are the causal factors.

Senior Associate Saurabh Sonawane said, “We try to reach the crash site within 12 hours of the incident. This helps us pick up evidence such as tyre marks from the site. Such site evidence is instrumental for us in recreating the crash. Apart from evidence, pictures are taken from different angles.”

The team typically takes 3-4 hours to collect evidence and a detailed report is generated within three days.

Once evidence is collected from the site, the injuries and the wounds of the survivors and victims are analysed through their medical and post-mortem reports. 

Associate Director (projects) Aditya Nayan said that injury analysis helped the team ascertain if the deaths were due to the impact of the crash or related factors. 

According to Nayan, the investigations have helped the team devise solutions for locations where crashes are high in number.

“On the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, we were able to give solutions for the defects and the government helped us mend them. We have been successful in bringing down fatalities on the expressway by around 30 per cent,” he said.


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