Navi Mumbai traffic cops book 72 drunk drivers in last 4 days to avoid untoward incidents on Dec 31, but book 2 negligent drivers because '3 speed guns are too few and too old'
Party animals of Navi Mumbai would do well to usher in 2012 with a driver who is sober. The traffic police have started a strict drive against rash and drink driving, especially on Palm Beach Road, in order to ensure accident free celebrations in the run-up to the New Year's Eve.
The traffic police have registered cases against 72 drivers found driving
while intoxicated in the last four days. Pic/Sameer Markande
The traffic police have registered cases against 72 drivers found driving while intoxicated in the last four days. But the traffic police's track record for booking rash and negligent drivers is not so good. They have registered just two cases in the last four days in spite of the fact that Palm Beach Road witnesses numerous incidents of rash driving every day. Officials blame the lack of speed guns (speed gauging machines) for not being able to take action against speedsters. The department has just three speed guns and they are said to be too old and of a low range compared.
"The speed guns have range of just 4-5 metres. Generally, drivers slow down when they see police checkpoints from far off. But the advanced speed guns have a range of around 40 metres, which facilitates traffic cops to note down the speed of the vehicle from a long distance. Also, to get a reading on these old speed guns, officials have to stay in the middle of the road, which can be dangerous for them," said a police official of Navi Mumbai. "Although three speed guns cannot be considered enough, we have done a good job in checking driving offenders in the city," he added.
Nonetheless, the traffic police have started rigorous patrolling and have set up checkpoints on roads, particularly on Palm Beach, to check any untoward incidents. After the bike-car collision near NRI Square on December 25, which killed one, the Navi Mumbai police is more cautious.
S A Quadri, assistant police commissioner, Navi Mumbai, said, "We have increased our patrolling on Palm Beach road in the last four days to ensure smooth vehicular movement. We will be more alert on the night of December 31."
He added, "We can't put barricades across the road to check accidents, but we may keep barricades at some of the squares on Palm Beach Road to prevent collisions."