Indian Express, October 29, 2009

To reduce the rate of pedestrian deaths on roads, the findings of a project on Traffic Calming Strategies were revealed on Wednesday at the India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road.

The findings of a two-year project undertaken by an NGO, Consumer Unity and Trust Society (CUTS) International, in partnership with IIT-Delhi and the Department of Technology and Society (DTS), Lund University, Sweden, emphasised on making the roads safer for pedestrians.

The main aim of the project was to “understand pedestrian safety problems and to identify feasible traffic calming measures”.

“The proportion of pedestrians killed in Mumbai, Delhi and Kota are 79, 47 and 28 per cent respectively,” CUTS officials said. “There is a great need to find measures to improve the situation.”

The project was conducted in Jaipur and its findings will soon be made into a manual. It was also supported by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA).

Some findings that experts at the meet said are can be implemented include solutions to lower vehicle speeds at intersections with pedestrians. Measures such as humps, speed breakers and roundabouts were recommended.

“Pedestrians are extremely exposed and vulnerable, and the speeds are too high to allow a safe and proper communication. One main problem is that road users are not offered any comfortable and safe crossing options. Existing pedestrian crossings are not suited for pedestrians,” said professor Christer Hyden from Lund University.

“The project in Jaipur was a pilot project, we want other cities to adopt the findings and make roads safer,” Keya Ghosh of CUTS said.

Geetam Tiwari, professor IIT-Delhi emphasised on making right efforts in improving public transport and making them more comfortable and safe. Kerela Transport Minister Jose Thettayil was also present during the meet and invited the team to Kerala.

Parliamentary Secretary of Meghalaya A Pariong was also present during the meet.

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