In the last two days I have been witness to three gruesome road accidents involving young children on two wheelers on Surat roads. This, in-spite of Surat city having the best roads in the country. In all the three cases none of the riders of the vehicles had any protective helmets on them. In fact in yesterday’s accident I could see that the pillion rider was injured more than the driver. So the pillion rider also needs the protection of a helmet.
I am also aware of many other cases where young lives have been lost due to road accidents in Surat causing irreparable loss and pain to their near and dear ones. I can say with certainty that wearing a helmet can save lives and reduce the damage caused in accidents. Years ago my only brother met with a road accident on the ghat road between Coimbatore and Ooty. He was on a motorcycle and met with an accident with a four-wheeler coming down the ghat section of the road. He was gruesomely injured in this accident. In fact, the impact on his head was so strong that a small stone had penetrated his helmet. His life was saved only because he was wearing a good helmet. I narrate this only to share my first hand experience.
There are many other incidents where lives were saved by wearing helmets on two wheelers. I have also noticed a tendency of drivers even educated ones follow rules only to avoid being reprimanded by a traffic cop. They don’t see any value in following rules and adopting safe driving practices unless something drastic happens to them or their near ones. We need to come out of this attitude and understand that the cops are there only to oversee and help us follow rules and correct our errors for our welfare. I have also seen young drivers (even older ones at times) using their Cell Phones while riding a two-wheeler. One hand on the Throttle and another on their phones and that too on a busy road with lots of Vehicular traffic. I have seen some of them sending text messages on the go!!?? They are putting themselves to tremendous risk. Drive defensively – assume that the other person will always be an irresponsible driver and take precautions. You can mitigate any eventuality by this approach. Observe speed limits. I hope the readers of this Blog post set examples for others in the city to follow. If you or anyone in your family or friends is riding a two-wheeler, please ask them to always wear a good quality protective helmet and follow traffic rules and drive safe.
Life is precious. Let us not squander it.
Dated: 18th June 2014