Road accidents menace, alcohol, how to go about solving it?

Road accidents are quite a menace and the statistics seem to prove the same with some documentations claiming India as the country which records the highest number of road accidents in the world. I wouldn’t argue as to how true it is and do we have to check the credibility of the resources for this info.

For me, the bigger questions are why and how do we go about resolving it? Considering the why, we could blame the poor quality of roads- there are no sufficient two lanes, the signalling system is a little out of sync, people don’t follow it very well, the roads are pretty pathetic with the potholes and people trying to avoid them, the enforcement is a little lax and the corruption and bribing do play a considerable role around, the number of increasing young drivers who don’t even have their license and scores of reasons more. And yeah how can I forget the biggest menace- Alcohol induced driving.

Now that the reasons are established to a certain extent, the next idea is about looking at the solutions. Of course the natural solutions are the widely published ones- having a double lane roads, frequent inspections, punishments, stringent measures, making better roads, installing proper signalling systems……….. The solutions too are aplenty. How about the alcohol induced driving? How do we put a check on that?

We have seen that the number of accidents that happen on a new year eve are at their peak, thanks to the alcohol and the drive. So what we do is we have a patrol for that which gets very active during this time of the season and the checking is pretty strict and so are the punishments. Recently I saw checking happening here in Mysore on the days when there are events, parties are held. That sure is one good way to reduce the number of drunken drivers. But what else could we add to make it more effective?

I was watching the cartoon Simpsons, in particular an episode where Moe (Bartender) asks who among the group was the designated driver and the rest of the people were supplied alcohol except the designated driver.  That seems like a sensible idea to me. Instead of having people to check and punish after the error has been made, why not put a proactive measure and stop the mistake even before it happens. I mean do not supply any alcohol to the driver/ designated driver. The rest may merry but we could atleast be sure that there are responsible hands behind those wheels. I do agree it is not going to work everywhere. Infact there sure are a lot of road blocks in that coming true. But I am of the belief that change must start somewhere and if that somewhere is this starting point, isn’t it worth trying out?


14 thoughts on “Road accidents menace, alcohol, how to go about solving it?

  1. I agree with you. But the problem is, no responsible adult would indulge in alcohol and then drive. It’s usually the first timers- college kids, who think it’s rather “cool” to drink & drive and have masti. It’s really good that Mysore has strict traffic rules now-a-days. not only for checking for drunken drivers but also regarding helmets and proper licence and documents.
    Nice post 🙂

    • Thank you Neha 🙂

      True, many drunken drivers are the college kids, but once the drink gets in, there isn’t much of a difference between a coll kid and a responsible adult right 😉 . .. But yea its a good thing to know that Mysore is keeping up on the traffic front. Another reason to hold the heads high 🙂

  2. inducares says:

    Vinay i appreciate your concern.I think the solution lies in traffic police becoming more proactive-they just stand by the roadside yapping away…they ought to check the speed & sobriety of drivers…an alcoholic driver can be spotted before he rams into something also;if care is taken….but as you said-bribery takes care of all crimes.

    • I agree! Proactive still seems a farsighted word for the force which s not yet totally active.. I sure wish it would be but again looking at the stats, we are still the largest underemployed force putting in a logisticial issue of having the force in the areas of necessity.. One way i can imagine is putting less reliance and responsibility on the system and maybe finding an alternate way.. For now the solution seems a lil too elusive 😦

  3. shwetha says:

    ofcourse we neva let our ‘designated driver’ consume alcohol (if u know who it is :P).. well jokes apart.. this is something ppl should be aware of.. nice one!!

  4. From my practical experience, most accidents happen with the patients who actually smells of alcohol. Its become sometimes difficult to understand whether the accident has made them unconscious or the person is actually in a different World.

    Regarding car, its always better to be owner driven than depending on an semi literate person. It not only saves money, keeps the privacy and safety on but also saves the fuel. A driver will never care to release the clutch gently. He will rather think of the shortcut. More over, will you go to smell your driver’s mouth ! Even if you smell regularly twice a day (or more), he might take another substance that will leave no smell.

    • Thank you Abhishek 🙂 ..Interesting view about the person smelling the alcohol..

      With the designated driver, I agree that a driver wouldn’t probably care for the car but he would certainly care for his own life and to think of it, I certainly would trust the wheels to a sober person than an inebriated one..

      Smell indicators are probably not the best way to check, but I guess there are simple tests to identify, like making the person tell a phrase or a coherent paragraph or something like that which can make us identify how drunk he is. I am pretty sure there must be alternate ways to identify the amount of inebriation..

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