Road accidents in India: The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) plans to roll out the facility of cashless medical treatment of road accident victims across the country in three to four months, a top government official said today (December 4).
Road Transport and Highways Secretary Anurag Jain while inaugurating an event organised by the Institute of Road Traffic Education (IRTE) noted India has the highest number of road accident deaths in the world.
"Free and cashless medical treatment to accident-injured victims is part of the amended Motor Vehicle Act 2019 (MVA2019). Some states have implemented it but now the Ministry of Roads in league with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will be fully implementing it across the nation," Jain said.
He added the facility will be rolled out in three to four months. According to him, it is envisioned to provide access to cashless trauma care treatment for road accident victims at the nearest appropriate hospital in the country, in accordance with the Supreme Court (SC) ruling, and by drawing its power from the Motor Vehicle (Amendment) Act 2019 (MV Amendment Act).
Golden hour medical treatment:
"Such cashless treatment shall be extended to road accident victims including during golden hour, as defined by the MV Amendment Act," he added. Golden hour refers to the critical first hour after a road accident with casualties when prompt medical attention can make all the difference.
The road secretary said for education and awareness about road safety, the Union Ministry of Education has agreed to include road safety as part of the curriculum for schools and colleges to be implemented soon.
"For vehicular engineering, several steps have been taken including seat belt reminder and introduction of Bharat NCAP," he said.
IRTE President Rohit Baluja said the global road safety experts attending the event will be working towards deliberating and finalizing suggestive codes of safe practice for driver certification, diagnosis of road crashes through multi-disciplinary crash investigation and safety of vulnerable road users.
Delhi recorded most road fatalities in India in 2022:The national capital recorded the maximum number of road crash fatalities in the country in 2022 with 2,103 people losing their lives, according to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB). According to the 'Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India 2022' report, Delhi accounted for the highest number of road accidents in the country- 5,387- and recorded 1,412 deaths due to fatal road accidents.
Most of the road accident deaths in 53 megacities, including Delhi, were caused due to over-speeding (51.5 per cent), followed by dangerous or careless driving/over-taking (31.3 per cent), and driving under the influence of drugs/alcohol (2.7 per cent).
A total of 68,236 road accidents were reported in 53 cities across the country during 2022 and 57,246 people were injured in these crashes while 17,680 people lost their lives, according to the data. The NCRB report comprised road accidents, railway accidents, and railway crossing accidents- the three major contributors to accidental deaths.
Road accidents accounted for 97.3 per cent of the total accidents, the report said. Most of these accidents occurred near residential areas (29.1 per cent), followed by industrial areas (9.7 per cent), and areas surrounding educational institutions like schools and colleges (8.7 per cent). Delhi also topped the list of the cities with the maximum number of railway accidents as it accounted for 50.9 per cent of the total mishaps during 2022, the report said.
(With PTI inputs)