Helmets now mandatory

Helmets now mandatory
Highlights

Helmets now mandatory, Hyderabad Traffic Police, Tejdeep Kaur Menon, Helmets. According to HTP officials, it would be generating awareness amongst the motorists about the risks of not using helmets.

The Hyderabad Traffic Police (HTP) launched the helmet rule with gusto in 2005, when Tejdeep Kaur Menon was the police chief. Subsequently her successors tried to enforce the rule strictly, but failed miserably. The rule was then conveniently put in the cold storage citing 'political pressure'. However, its counterparts in Cyberabad continue to implement the law strictly. The rule is also being strictly implemented in several cities across the country including Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Bengaluru. The HTP has now taken up the drive again. It would be sensitising the people on the need to use helmets for three months by handing out bills and then enforce the rule strictly With several fatal accidents in the city involving head injuries, the traffic police are pondering over ways to strictly enforce the helmet rule in Hyderabad, on the lines of Cyberabad.

According to HTP officials, it would be generating awareness amongst the motorists about the risks of not using helmets. The Hyderabad Traffic Police had launched an awareness drive, where about one lakh hand bills, in three languages, would be distributed to motorists violating the traffic rules. Within three months its enforcement would be followed strictly.

Emphasising the use of helmet and using seat belts in cars, the hand bill being distributed by police says, “It’s the best way to prevent fatal injuries.” It also points out that, “A properly fitted helmet can reduce the risk of head injury by 85 per cent and brain injury by 88 per cent.” On children’s safety it states, “Children are 14 times more likely to survive a bike crash, if they wear a helmet.” Speaking to The Hans India, Jitender, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic), said that the police started distributing the hand bills so that motorists would be sensitised towards the issue. He added that this campaign, which was launched on Monday, would continue for at least a month, where more than one lakh hand bills would be distributed at major junctions.

“Helmet is for a person’s own safety, which is generally being worn out of fear of being issued a challan. We want to send a strong message that it protects the head and the brain inside it,” he said.

According to the official, two-wheeler commuters are at a higher risk and prone to fatal injuries.

“By propagating this message we hope that motorists would voluntarily adopt this practice. Between 200 to 300 challans are issued, but the prime concern is to generate awareness,” Jitender said.

The Additional Commissioner refuted that the traffic police werer more interested in filling its coffers.

“If the state adds Rs 2 to 3 crore to its coffers, it is not a big deal. If everyone follows rules strictly, we shall stop issuing challans,” he quipped.

G Sudheer Babu, DCP, West Zone, a vocal proponent of enforcing the traffic rule, pointed out, “In Hyderabad, incidence of traffic violations are more. In other bigger cities like Delhi, it is enforced efficiently.”

“We want to reduce the number of fatalities involving bikes,” said the DCP.

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