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Rural development ministry appoints 800 trained auditors to monitor quality and safety of rural roads in the country

Union Ministry of Rural Development has appointed about 800 auditors in the country for regular road safety audits  of rural roads having more than Five Km of length and to monitor quality and safety of the roads .

Rural roads deaths increased by more than 7 per cent between 2014-2019

The share of deaths on roads passing through rural areas has increased  by more than 7 per cent between 2014-2019 while number of road accidents have decreased . About One lakh  deaths were recorded  in the year 2018  as compared to  nearly 83,000 during the year 2014 on rural roads.

While urban areas  have high concentration of vehicles , the number  of deaths rising in rural areas  is primarily attributed to  expansion of highways and  construction of poorly designed rural roads with very few safety features“ said Mr N.N.Sinha, secretary, Ministry of rural development while inaugurating a webinar on “Safer Roads for Safety of All Road Users”   organised by India chapter of  International Road Federation (IRF) , a global body working for better and safer  roads worldwide .

To improve quality and safety of rural roads especially at junctions where rural roads connect with highways, road safety audits will be done at roads more than 5 Km in length. Apart from safety audit the Ministry of rural development is also imparting awareness to school children and rural population about road safety through audio visual clips” said Mr Sinha.

At present all roads constructed under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna  ( PMGSY) are covered by initial Five year maintenance contract along with the construction contract .with the same contractor as per the standard bidding document. At the end of Five years. The Rural Development ministry with financial support from states plans to renew the contract for another Five years for maintenance of the rural rods. Most of the states have agreed on funding" ”said Mr Sinha.

The 5E’s of safe road operation should be fully carried out on rural roads

“To ensure safety on rural roads and make them forgiving roads in the country with minimum accidents and almost no road fatality the most desirable design standards should be selected and implemented . The 5E’s of safe road operation including Engineering, Enforcement, Encouragement, Education and Emergency care should be fully carried out on rural roads. “Said Mr K K Kapila, president emeritus, International Road Federation (IRF) while speaking at the webinar

“For implementing safe engineering on the rural roads all measures including by passes for congested areas, creating self-contained zones, , signage’s, crash barriers, Horizontal and vertical geometry ,Cross-sectional elements, Design of at-grade and grade separated junctions should be incorporated “ said Mr Kapila.

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