Gross violation of traffic rules

Will it ever stop?

Just days after two schoolgirls were killed within hours in road crashes at the Shahbagh and Matsya Bhaban intersection, reckless driving of buses continues unabated. Buses can still be seen blatantly violating traffic rules, stopping in the middle of the street to pick up and drop off passengers while the latter pay no heed to the danger posed to their lives. Despite there being three footbridges at Shahbagh intersection, pedestrians continue to cross the street amid moving traffic as traffic sergeants remain oblivious to the non-compliance to traffic rules. 

It is common knowledge that deaths caused by road accidents in Bangladesh are, unfortunately, a disturbingly regular phenomenon. As per a recent report by the Bangladesh Passengers' Welfare Association, at least 8,642 people were killed and 21,855 injured in road accidents across the country in 2015. Sadly, vehicle drivers, the traffic police and pedestrians -- through their flagrant violation of traffic rules -- continue to contribute to the growing menace of road accidents. 

The issue of road safety is one that Bangladesh has been plagued with for longer than we can remember. The failure to fully enforce traffic rules and the culture of impunity that allows reckless drivers to go scot-free has exacerbated traffic woes. We have now reached a point where the epidemic of road accidents threatens our very urban existence and the need to reverse the trend of road space abuse has never been greater.