BEST buses claim 37 lives every year: Cops


BEST buses claim 37 lives every year: Cops


At least 37 people die every year in accidents involving Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport Undertaking (BEST) buses. This has been revealed in the statistics released by the Mumbai Traffic Police recently. The estimate states that 188 people have died and 531 got  seriously injured in accidents caused by BEST buses between 2008 and 2012.   

“Last year, 32 fatal accidents were reported in which as many people were killed.

In 2011, 29 people died in as many number of accidents,” said a senior traffic police officer. He pointed out that even regular counselling for drivers was not helping to curb such accidents.

“We usually do not detain a BEST bus as it delays the passengers sitting inside it. But this is making the drivers take the traffic rules casually which is resulting in more and more cases of rash driving and over-speeding,’’ the officer added.

Another issue that inconveniences the traffic and pedestrians alike is that more often than not the drivers pull up their buses far away from the designated stops. In fact, sometimes they stop in the middle of the road creating a hindrance for vehicular traffic. But this illegal practice also makes senior citizens, pregnant women and minors run to catch the bus. “This endangers the lives of passengers,” said the officer.

The drivers also break traffic rules by stopping on zebra crossings.

The BEST administration plans to review all the accident cases soon. “We have decided to give special training to our bus drivers which will help them minimise the number of accidents,” said Sanjay Ambole, chairman of BEST committee. However, he said that the accidents occur duo the ever-increasing vehicular traffic on roads.

According to BEST public relations officer Virendra Bagul, the Underaking frequently organises yoga classes and counselling sessions for its drivers to combat stress at work. “We have dismissed 17 and suspended 10 drivers between April 2011 and March 2012 following fatal accidents,” he informed. 

Traffic expert Ashok Datar said: “The BEST committee and its officers should jointly check whether their drivers are strictly following thetraffic rules or not.

Such a survey would surely help minimise accidents by BEST buses on Mumbai roads.”

Date of Article: 
Friday, September 13, 2013