Midday Impact: Traffic police to shut killer Godrej signal at Vikhroli
mid-day impact>> After mid-day reported about the frequent deadly accidents along the Eastern Express Highway, traffic police will shut down the dangerous U-turns along the stretch
Road safety is set to take a turn for the better along the Eastern Express Highway (EEH) in Vikhroli, now that the traffic police have decided to close U-turns at Godrej Signal. This action comes on the heels of mid-day's report on this spot, which has witnessed as many as 29 road mishaps through 2017 until June 2018.
This paper's July 27 report ('Vikhroli's Straight, Long Killer stretch') was part of the Killer Road series, which covered the deadliest roads in the city. Even though this road is a straight stretch, sudden turns often lead to collisions with vehicles speeding along the highway. Adding to the confusion, the signals are kept on amber at night, so motorists are even less likely to maintain road safety.
mid-day had also reached out to families who had lost their loved ones along this 3-km stretch. Following the report, the traffic police analysed various crash-prone spots in the city and found that the junctions in front of the Soap Gate and Ghoda Gate of Godrej recorded a high number of casualties.
The traffic department will now cordon off U-turns along the stretch on a trial basis for two months. The traffic signals and gaps in the median divider at the Ghoda Gate and Soap Gate will be shut temporarily. Through the following 60 days, the department will keep an eye out for accidents, if any, and analyse them.
DCP (traffic) Dr Saurabh Tripathi told mid-day, "Considering many accidents and fatalities at these spots, we have issued a temporary notification for road safety. The two signals at Vikhroli are closed temporarily. We have also suggested alternate roads for movement in the notification. In case anybody has any reasonable suggestions, we will consider it, and a final call will be taken."
Kin of victims relieved
This reporter reached out to Chandrakant More, whose 20-year-old son met with a fatal accident after a truck took a sudden U-turn and dashed into his bike in 2015. "I am very happy to hear that the police have closed the U-turn. Had this decision been taken earlier, so many lives could have been saved. But I am really happy that there will be fewer mishaps now," said the father, who has served both in the Army and the Mumbai police.
mid-day also spoke to Yogesh Shah, whose son's 2015 accident was highlighted in the July report as well. The 20-year-old was driving at night with his friends when a dog appeared out of nowhere. He swung the car away, but it hit the median instead. "This is a very good initiative by the police department. We are very happy, as this signal is very dangerous, especially at night."
Transport expert Jitendra Gupta said, "This study by the traffic department is good; if they go by statistics, they will achieve success. However, shutting the traffic signals might lead to more speeding on the highway. In order to lower accident rates, the cops have to make similar arrangements to JJ flyover, where speeding motorists get a challan."
1. Vehicles entering and exiting from Godrej can't use the two-way service road
2. Vehicles from Mumbai city can't take a left turn on the service road from the main road for entry into Godrej
3. Vehicles travelling from Godrej to the city may travel on the north-bound road on EEH (Thane-bound), take a U-turn below Vikhroli flyover and then travel towards
4. Vehicles travelling on the south-bound road from Thane may go towards Mumbai city on the south-bound side of EEH and take a U-turn below Andheri-Ghatkopar link road
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