Experts at a seminar on Sunday said reckless driving is one of the leading causes of road accidents in the country as the transport sector is facing the shortage of skilled drivers.
Road accidents have increased at an alarming rate resulting in deaths and injuries of a huge number of people every year, they told a seminar at the Council Bhaban of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology in the capital.
Accident Research Institute of BUET organised the seminar titled ‘Strategic Accident Reduction Programme: Joining Hands of Research and Realisation.’
State minister for finance and planning MA Mannan, chief engineer of roads and highways department Ebne Alam Hasan and chairman of Bangladesh Road Transport Authority Md Moshiur Rahman, among others, addressed the seminar with BUET vice-chancellor professor Saiful Islam in the chair.
Director of ARI of BUET professor Moazzem Hossain presented the keynote paper in the seminar highlighting different aspects of road accidents.
Mannan said the government has constructed huge road infrastructures including flyovers and bridges to improve the road communication system in the country.
This improvement of road communication network is significantly contributing to the economic development in the country, he said adding, ‘We have to improve the overall traffic system creating skilled manpower and incorporating technology to stop road accidents.’
‘Although we are facing a challenge to reduce road accidents, the government has been successful to reduce accidents on waterways in the country,’ the state minister added.
Citing a research report of ARI, in his keynote paper, professor Moazzem said over speed of vehicles is the main reason in case of 43 per cent road accidents while it is the second cause in case of 31 per cent road crash.
The study found that speed of vehicles exceeded 100-kilometre per hour in risky areas on roads and there was no effective monitoring system to check such reckless driving.
Referring to police reports, professor Moazzem said 3000 road accidents take place every year in the country and 2700 people are killed and 2,400 injured in the road accidents during the same period of time. The estimated economic losses stand at Tk 40,000 crore per year, he added.
The government has set a target of reducing 50 per cent road accident by 2020 to fulfil the target of Sustainable Development Goals, he said.
Other speakers stressed the need for motivation and awareness among the drivers to check reckless driving.