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Roads are still deathtraps

  • Published at 01:44 am August 16th, 2018
Roads accidents
Health ministry to issue a gazette notification containing guidelines that ensure provision of emergency medical service to road crash victims as quickly as possible in a bid to save the lives of the injured Dhaka Tribune

Over 50 deaths in the last seven days

Eight days of a student movement for road safety that paralyzed the capital, and an extended Traffic Week in which law enforcement was extra vigilant, has had no immediate effect on road safety.

The situation on the roads remained almost unchanged with a high number of deaths across the country in the last one week.

News reports show that in the last seven days, more than 50 people were killed and around 200 people injured, in traffic accidents around the country.

Young children and adults walking on the streets, bikers, drivers, and bus helpers, were among the victims. Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal also suffered an accident in which his car was hit by a bus.

Though police have filed cases in each accident, investigation has only progressed in the incident involving the home minister.

Wednesday as well, people lost their lives on the roads. Three auto rickshaw passengers were killed in Kishoreganj district when a speeding bus rammed it in the Konapara area on the Kishoreganj-Bhairab Road.

Angry locals burnt the bus down.

In Rajshahi, a bus plunged into a roadside shop, killing three people, including a schoolgirl.

The 12-year-old, Sharmina Ashrafi Anika, was a seventh grader at a local school and was on her way to another school to meet her sister.

Another victim of the Rajshahi incident, ill-fated Shakhawat Hossain Sabuj, a cable line operator, left behind two daughters - the younger one only six months old. The third victim of the incident, Ismail Hossain Tinku, is the only brother among his four siblings. He got married just two years ago.

The day before, a microbus carrying a pair of newlyweds and their families, collided head-on with a bus in Chandpur, leaving seven killed and 17 injured. The newly married couple is fighting for their lives in a hospital.

On the same day, a truck driver was killed in a head-on collision with a bus in Nakla upazila of Sherpur. Twenty passengers were injured.

On Sunday, a school student was run over by a bus in Rangpur’s Darshana. Locals vandalized the bus, and later an ambulance, which came to rescue his body.

On Saturday, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal’s car was hit by a bus in Dhaka.

The ‘helper’ of the bus was behind the wheel during the incident. Police arrested both the driver and helper. The minister was unhurt.

Bangladesh Passengers’ Welfare Association President, Mozammel Haque, said discipline did not come to the streets despite the student movement.

“The drivers are reckless and pedestrians do not follow rules. The past week’s accidents expose the tendency of drivers to violate laws as well as people’s reluctance to follow them,” he said.

“If those responsible for the accidents are not punished, discipline cannot be achieved,” he added.