KATHMANDU, May 17: Records maintained by the police show that road accidents have killed 11,005 people across the country during the last five years. Altogether 19,877 people were seriously injured in those accidents.
A total of 48,981 accidents were recorded across the country in the last five years, according to the Nepal Police Headquarters. The records also show that road accidents have been increasing every year.
Experts blame poorly designed roads and lack of periodic maintenance for the vast majority of accidents. "Poorly designed roads are responsible for most of the accidents,” former Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Nepal Police Keshav Adhikari told Republica, “Also, the bends have been badly designed.”
In the last five years, the rate of occurrence of road accidents has shown an increase of 28 percent. In the fiscal year 2014/15, a total of 9,145 road accidents were recorded across the country. And in the first nine months of the current fiscal year, 8,680 road accidents have already been recorded.
While experts blame poor design of roads for the accidents and some experts suggest increasing the number of traffic police, the chief of the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division (MTPD), Baggikhana, SSP Basanta Panta however thinks traffic police needs new technology to minimize road accidents.
Road accidents have continued to increase in the last five years, marking an increase of 38 percent since fiscal year 2014/15. Police data show road accidents claimed a total of 2,004 people in the fiscal year 2014/15 and 2,070 in the first nine months of the fiscal year 2018/19.
“Even if we increase the number of personnel, we cannot control the road accidents until newer technologies are used,” SSP Panta said. He claimed that the city areas need more traffic lights and more surveillance cameras should be installed for strict enforcement of traffic rules.
SSP Panta also revealed that the MTPD had prepared new working procedures in April with an aim to reduce the road accident numbers. “But the road accidents will not decrease overnight,” he said, “We are working and it will take time.”