Amidst Heavy Rain, Mumbai Traffic Police Fill Potholes On Highway
When commuters and residents were struggling with traffic jams due to the dismal state of the busy Sion-Panvel Highway, the Navi Mumbai traffic department took the matter into their own hands on Saturday and filled up potholes along a one-km stretch of the highway.
According to Hindustan times, because of the potholes, there have been severe traffic jams on the Sion-Panvel highway, near Kopra bridge in Kharghar. An assistant police inspector from Kharghar traffic unit, Pravin Pandey, said on Saturday morning that they decided to do something about it after traffic remained blocked for over three hours near Kharghar.
“Looking at the bumper to bumper traffic in the morning hours, we summoned our personnel to fill the potholes along the crater-filled patch between Kharghar and Kopra. The line of vehicles stretched up to CBD bridge. Since PWD workers were busy in fixing the potholes, additional support was provided by our personnel to clear traffic,” said Pravin Pandey told Times of India.
Traffic officials started to temporarily fill up the potholes using the concrete pieces and rubble left on the side of the highway after last year’s repair work. “The concrete pieces had been left on the divider after the road was repaired last year, so we asked our officials to fill up the potholes with them,” Pandey said.
Upon learning that the traffic police were fixing the potholes, officials from the public works department reached the spot with rollers and started repairs on that stretch of the road. However, their progress was interrupted due to heavy rain. Requesting anonymity, a PWD official told Hindustan Times, “We are repairing the road in parts. We will continue with the work until the monsoon is over. We have ensured that our officials are doing quality work.” Executive Engineer, PWD, Kishore Patil said, “Rain has played spoilsport over the last few days. Our men are at work along the stretch.”
Deepak Singh, an activist, was quoted by Times of India as saying, “This road was repaired on war-footing during the last October FIFA World Cup event to show the world that PWD is prompt in maintaining smooth roads which fell flat with a few spells of rain.”
The Logical Indian Take
Lack of well-maintained roads and footpaths leads to accidents and fatalities, causes traffic jams which in turn increase air and noise pollution levels to a dangerous extent and wastes a lot of time, fuel, money and peace of mind. ‘Road Accidents in India 2016’ report, released by Road Transport and Highways Ministry, revealed that in 2016, 55 accidents and 17 deaths were reported every hour on average. 1.51 lakh people died on Indian roads in 2016 i.e. one death every 3.5 minutes.
Without efficient public transport systems, cities in India are being choked by the ever-increasing number of vehicles. Recently, The Financial Express reported that Pune has become the first urban area in the country where the number of registered vehicles (36.27 lakh) has overtaken the total population (approx 35 lakh) of the city.
We commend the work done by the Kharghar traffic unit for the ease of the commuters. However, in the last one year, potholes on the Sion-Panvel highway have caused deaths, yet authorities don’t seem to be serious. Potholes are repaired with patchwork, and soon the road is back to a sorry state. We urge the government and the civic authorities to look into this matter.