• Wednesday, Aug 10, 2022
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ED: Unfit vehicles on unfit roads

  • Published at 03:01 am September 27th, 2021
Traffic
MEHEDI HASSAN

Officials evaluate vehicles within a single minute, when a proper test would take at least 15 minutes to conduct

To say that that Bangladesh has an unhealthy traffic ecosystem would be an understatement, with corruption and impunity ingrained into the way vehicles are allowed to operate on the streets, leading to not only the loss of precious time on the streets due to traffic jams, but also to the loss of countless lives everywhere as a result of reckless driving and unfit vehicles.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the way the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority ensures the fitness of the vehicles that are allowed to run on the streets, with a study revealing that officials evaluate vehicles within a single minute, when a proper test would take at least 15 minutes to conduct.

If the authorities, whose sole purpose it is to ensure that the streets of our country are safe for the people, are not doing their job properly, is it any surprise that there exist so many issues which continue to plague our nation’s traffic system?

A proper test would check 30 to 35 parts in a vehicle, from emission consistency, brake and wheel performance, to headlights, but it has been found that officials do little more than take a quick glance at the engine number before letting these vehicles out on the streets -- as nothing more than traffic accidents waiting to happen.

There are automated machines available which can speed up the process instead of relying on individual officials to manually check each component, but there are currently only two machines and not enough officials, which highlight perhaps the wider problems of our lack of focus on improving traffic conditions.

With the state of being in such dire straits in the nation, authorities would do well to increase investment into the BRTA while also holding its officials accountable for the responsibilities they are meant to carry out.