Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Accidents at centennial Market pose questions to street safety

On March 28, a four-year old boy was knocked down by a speeding car at the Centennial Farmers’ Market. He sustained serious injuries on his thigh and ankle.
This is the third accident case reported till date at the place resulting in one lost life. Several cases like this have gone unreported.
However, the recent incident has raised serious questions about the safety of the market streets which are always crowded with pedestrians and shoppers.
 “Many motorists drive at full speed even when there is a crowd; they do not care to stop when they see people crossing the road,” Dorji Om, 39 said adding that children are most at risk.
Lack of traffic signals, zebra crossings and strict monitoring are major hazards to passersby.
“Traffic officials are very lenient while enforcing laws and it continues to increase the danger,” said Tshewang Lhamo, an observer.
Rinchen Dorji, a taxi driver, agreed that motorist have the obligation to slow down for pedestrians and when taking corners.
According to a police official, making the traffic one-way is suitable to curb such accidents in the bazaar.
However, town residents said that it is still not a solution since cars are parked along the way and vehicles move haphazardly.
 Financial penalty would deter careless motorists from abusing the road safety laws and people are baffled as to why this is not enforced strictly.
“It is necessary to have more zebra crossing and over-bridges, designated areas for crossing the road and speed bumps in key areas in the bazaar,” said a private employee, Tshering.
He also said that this does not take away from the fact that both pedestrians and motorists should stop being careful when crossing a road.
“Life is far too precious to be lost on the road,” he added.

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