Road accidents are all too common here and despite efforts to improve road safety, the number of mishaps has remained high. Also, with the increase in population, a significant spike in such accidents has been noted over the years.
According to official statistics, over 5,000 road accidents in the country over the last three years have resulted in as many deaths and some 15,000 injuries.
Even though a number of motorways have been constructed and the condition of highways has been improved, serious accidents continue to take place. One of the main issues is that many drivers in Pakistan are untrained or have only informal training, which leads to reckless driving and poor decision-making on the roads. Additionally, the passenger buses lack basic safety features, like seat belts and air bags.
To make meaningful progress in terms of reducing the number of accidents, continued investment in road infra-structure and driver education is necessary. Besides, stricter enforcement of traffic laws and penalties for reckless driving can help discourage dangerous behaviour on the roads.
In this regard, a national transport policy needs to be introduced, making it compulsory for transporters and private vehicle-owners to compensate the victims of their reckless behaviour. This has the potential to make the drivers more conscious of their liability, which, in turn, will result in careful driving and, thus, minimisation of RTAs.