Before we talk to others about their road behaviour, we need to look at ourselves. Do we follow the rules and drive safely? Each citizen should ask themselves - are we following road rules because we believe in them or are we acting when we are being watched by the traffic police (or the security camera)?
Poornima Chandran, Researcher
On August 7th 2016, I participated in a Traffic Awareness Campaign (TAC) organized by the Chennai-based volunteer group, Thozhan. My colleague, Prasanna Sugumaran had volunteered at a similar event some months ago and I decided to give it a shot, too. This time Thozhan had organised a much bigger event with the awareness campaign run at 100 junctions simultaneously.
In the previous post on how the media (Tamil and English) covers road accidents, we looked at the kind of details provided, and sensationalism in the articles. This post, based on 104 of the 181 Tamil and English media reports that were published between January and April 2016, analyses reportage on the causes of accidents, geography (rural vs urban), and road user behaviour.
Causes of accidents
In 2014, Tamil Nadu had the highest number of road accidents in the country and the highest number of deaths. Media reports invariably say that Indian roads are considered some of most dangerous in the world. Considering all these alarming stories on the low level of road safety in India, I thought it would be interesting to look at how public opinion is shaped on the issue of road accidents and road safety. I looked at 204 print media articles on road safety in Tamil Nadu, in English and Tamil, that were published between October and December 2015.