About 718 lives have been lost in 4956 accidents in Delhi-Agra expressway ever since it was open to the public. This was revealed as a reply to an RTI appeal by K.C Jain, an RTI activist, and Supreme Court Lawyer.
The above data pertains to the incidents between August 2012 and 31 March 2018. In addition to 718 fatalities, there were also 7671 serious injuries, which is alarming. The year 2016 recorded the most fatalities, with 128 people losing their lives from 1219 incidents. 919 incidents were recorded in 2015 where 142 people lost their lives. 2014 saw 127 people losing their lives from 771 recorded incidents.
A study conducted by Rail India Technical and Economic Service’s (RITES) in June 2017 revealed that most accidents happen between 1 am and 5 am when drivers are inattentive. Following this study, authorities have been supplying tea, coffee, and water to motorists during late hours.
Authorities have installed speed cameras, video-incident detection cameras, and CCTV cameras on the stretch to monitor the traffic movement. In addition, there are more than a dozen of rumble strips on the route, which alerts drivers when they tend to fall asleep.
Data from automatic surveillance gadgets and number plate readers revealed that about 2.33 crore vehicles have violated speed limits. But KC Jain claimed that the violators are let free and are not booked for the offenses. He also claimed that pleas to take steps against violators have fallen into deaf ears.
The Two major factors contributing to these accidents and fatalities are Overspeeding and Tyre Burst. In addition to overspeeding, drivers do not wear seat belts and motorists do not wear helmets, which increases the rate of fatalities.
About the expressway
The Yamuna Expressway, connecting Delhi and Agra opened for public use in 2012. It is one of India’s longest six-lane controlled-access expressway stretches and is expandable to 8 lanes. It connects Greater Noida and Agra. On May 21, 2015, the IAF landed a Dassault Mirage on the expressway as a part of a trial to see how highways can be used as runways during emergencies.