Why think of road safety at all? It is because of the accidents that occur everyday on the road, in which all sorts of vehicles and human beings and even animal are involved. These accidents mean loss of life and loss of property and more often than not obstruction to traffic. In this age of speed and fast moving vehicles and with the congestion on roads, these accidents have became almost an everyday affair. So unless everybody is educated on the importance of road safety, the loss and the sorry spectacles cannot be avoided. Prevention is better than cure. This holds good even in the matter of road accidents.
Accidents are due to many causes and may occur under different circumstances. The simplest but at the same time dangerous perhaps is people slipping down on the road caused by an orange or a banana peel. Without meaning any harm, quite innocently a person may throw away the orange peel or the banana skin on the road or the sidewalk. When a person, walking briskly, steps on, it he or she will slip down ending in fracture of bones and sometimes even more dangerous than that. So people must take care they do not throw the pealings on the road but should deposit them in a dust-bin. In some countries the offenders are severely punished. The second cause of accident is due to careless crossing in busy roads.
While crossing one must look to the right and left for moving vehicles and then cross. Where there are Zebra crossings on the road for the pedestrians to cross, one should cross along them. One should keep to the margin of the road while walking and the vehicles must keep to their lanes in busy streets. In the case of accidents involving vehicles there are many causes. One is trying to overtake and very often taking risk. Another is wrong judgment in crossing. Sometimes it may be not caring for the signals.
In crowded streets accidents may take place in a snap second because one does not care for the signal. “Stop, look and go” is the best precept; it will save vehicles from accidents. But where one takes a foolish step, the result is the inevitable accident. Jay riding may be another cause. Riding two or three abreast is always dangerous. Especially one must be aware of this. Scooter riders become victims of road accidents. But if they just wear the helmet as required by law they could easily avoid fracture and hence death. Very often the cause of accidents is the failure of the brake system which means the owner of the vehicle does not bother to keep the machine in good condition. By attending to the vehicle regularly a lot of miseries could be avoided.
Road safety is a matter of education in which the school can play a significant role. Through scouting, Red Cross and social education classes, children can be taught the importance of observing the rules of the road. Children must be taught their limbs and lives are very valuable and they must not take risk, especially when leaving the school. As soon as the bell goes children rush out and accidents do happen. Under the circumstances the teachers must feel it their duty to regulate the traffic near the school.
The police can cooperate with the school in this respect. To make the people road conscious, the mass media can play a useful role. The newspaper, the wall poster and the cinema and now the TV come in handy. Shots in the cinema or TV emphasizing the importance of road safety can be highlighted. There may be speeches over the radio by the police officials. During peak hours in crowded areas, the police may direct the traffic and ask people to keep to their lanes.