To prevent pedestrians from crossing the Western Express Highway (WEH) along flyovers, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) has decided to install barricades at their starting points.
On a trial basis, barricades have been installed at the start of the southbound stretch of the Vakola flyover. Authorities feel this would ensure pedestrians use Foot Over-Bridges (FOBs) and subways rather than risking theirs and motorists’ lives. In the past, while executing road-widening work on the WEH, the planning authority increased the height of the divider and had even planted trees to stop pedestrians from crossing the road, but to no avail.
A traffic constable deployed on the WEH said, “Many a time we see pedestrians crossing the highway near the beginning of the Vakola and other flyovers, as these locations lack big dividers. There are underpasses and FOBs that have been constructed along the WEH, but people risk their lives to save a few minutes.”
At present, residents of Anand Nagar, along the Vakola flyover, walk to the other side of the road at the northbound stretch of the flyover. A few of them said this saved them nearly 10 minutes they would have otherwise spent walking all the way to use the crossing at Vakola junction, next to the police station.
Senior Police Inspector (Traffic) P P Temkar from Vakola police station said, “It is good that the authorities have installed barricades at the start of the flyover. They will restrict pedestrians from crossing the road. At least now, we expect people to use underpasses, FOBs and cross the road from Vakola junction.” Despite repeated attempts, MSRDC officials remained unavailable for comment.