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National Road Safety Council (NRSC)

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National Road Safety Council is an advisory body. It was established under section 215 of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 with the objective of improving road safety aspects in road transport sector.

The Council is chaired by the Hon’ble Cabinet Minister of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MORTH). The official members of NRSC include the Ministers of State for MORTH, Minister-in-charge of Road Transport in States/UTs, representatives from Ministry of Home Affairs, Human Resource Development, Railways, Department of heavy Industry, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Planning Commission, Secretary of MORTH, Chairman of NationalHighways Authority of India, Director General of Roads Development of MORTH and Joint Secretary (Transport). The non-official co-opted members include some Road Safety Award winners, individuals nominated by the Hon’ble Minister of MORTH, Government institutions related to road construction, road safety and insurance and associations related with road safety.

In the meeting of NRSC held in March 2011, MORTH formed five separate working groups on the four Es of road safety, viz. Education, Engineering of Roads, Engineering of Vehicles, Enforcement, and Emergency Care. The five working groups submitted their recommendations in October 2011. Some of the major recommendations are:

Working Group on Education
  • The number of road accidents and fatalities should be reduced to half in the year 2020 with base year 2010 per 10,000 vehicles population. A Comprehensive Plan of Action on the lines of Millennium Development Goals to bring down the road accidents.
  • A National Road Safety Policy and supporting laws to be formulated.
  • State and District Road Safety Councils need to be constituted.
  • 50 per cent of all fines collected should be devoted to road safety activities.
  • A separate Road Safety Education and Awareness Fund needs to be created.
Working Group on Engineering of Roads
  • All National and State Highways should have signages.
  • Road Safety Audit for entire National Highways and State Highways network to be completed.
Working Group on Engineering of Vehicles
  • Requirements related to passive safety, active safety and general safety to be introduced in a planned manner.
  • Major improvements in vehicle designs are required with introduction of full vehicle crash tests, EMC and high technology solutions for better visibility.
  • Introduce mandatory Inspection and Certification requirements for all categories of vehicles.
Working Group on Emergency Care
  • Enunciate a National Accident Relief Policy and a National Trauma System Plan.
  • Deployment of a Pan-India Pre-Hospital Emergency Medical Care Network to ensure a primary crash response time of 8 – 10 minutes.
Working Group on Enforcement
  • The penalty structure of Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 Act need to be increased.
  • All state police forces need to be empowered to check overloading.
  • There must be no exemption in wearing of helmet. Wearing of seat belt should be compulsory for the driver and the front passenger and on national highways it should be compulsory for even the passengers in the back seat.
  • All enforcement agencies may impress upon the courts of the concerned cities/states that in graver cases of drunken driving, imprisonment must be provided to discourage drunken driving.

MORTH is currently examining these recommendations to draw a decadal action plan on road safety at the national, state and district levels.

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