Islamabad —The last ten years data on traffic accidents indicates that road accidents proved deadlier than the incidents of terrorism in Pakistan, the number of people lost their lives in road accidents is much higher than victims of terrorism as average 15 people died everyday in accidents across the country in last decade, analysis of the official data suggests.
According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics data on traffic accidents in Pakistan from 2004 to 2013 the ratio of killing in road accidents in Sindh was recorded the highest as the percentage of killing in road accident in Sindh was recorded up to up to 86 percent. The overall ratio of killing in road accidents across the country has been recorded up to 55 percent which according to the experts and former traffic police officials are highest.
According to the data, total 51,416 people have died in 97,739 road accidents across the country whereas almost 40,000 people lost their lives in terrorism related incidents. Even then the traffic accidents have always been an underreported issue in the country. Out of the total number of casualties, as much as 29,524 killed in 51,715 accidents in Punjab, 9,639 died in 13,965 accidents in Sindh, 9494 people killed in 27939 accidents in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 2250 people died in Balochistan in 4085 accidents. Out of the total number of accidents, 43,582 accidents were recorded as fatal which is 47.3 percent of the total accident.
While analyzing the data further in order to know the ratio of people killed per accidents across the country, it is found that the ratio of killing per accident is 55 percent in last ten years across the country. Similarly the ratio of injured people per accident is much higher than the number of people killed is as much as 125 percent per accident.
This correspondent has further analyzed the data on provincial level according to which Punjab province is on top in terms of number of accidents, casualties and people injured in the traffic accidents. As per data the number of accidents in Punjab is 52 percent of the total. The data further shows that the average number of people died per accident in percentage in Punjab is up to 60 percent which is the second highest in the country. Similarly the number of injured people per accident is recorded up to 129 per cent.
Although the number of accidents in Sindh are recorded very low during last ten years but the number of casualties is higher than any province in the country. As per data total 13,965 accidents were recorded from 2004-2013 and total 9639 people died. The data analysis further shows that the average killing per accident in percentage is highest from all other provinces and the death ratio per accident has been recorded up to 86 per cent whereas the ratio of injured people is lowest among the provinces as well which is 86 percent per accident.
The number of accidents although are high in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa however the number of casualties are lowest in terms of percentage per accident. As per data total 27939 accidents were recorded and 9494 people died in these accidents whereas 39799 were injured. The analysis of the data shows that the ratio of deaths per accident in the province is lowest which is up to 36 per cent of the total accidents. However the ratio of injured persons per accident is recorded up to 127 percent per accident.
The data further shows that number of accidents in Balochistan are lowest among other provinces as only 4,085 accidents have been reported in the province from 2004-13. The number of casualties in these provinces as per record is 2250 and 5847 people injured. The ratio of killing per accident is the second highest after Sindh as up to 65 percent per accident whereas the ratio of injuries per accident is up to 130 per cent.
Mr. Muhammad Shahid a road safety expert says the road accidents could cause long-term stress, leading to depression, anxiety and sleep problems. He said the government should take steps for creating awareness among road users particularly among motorcyclists as almost 20,000 people are being killed every year in road accident.
“The number of road accidents occurring in Pakistan is much higher than the existing data as majority of the road accident cases are not registered in the police station. Mostly children, pedestrians, cyclists and aged people face traffic accidents,” commented Mr. Shahid.
It is important to mention here that according to the World Health Organization report (published in 2013) road accidents will become the fifth major cause of deaths by 2030.
The main reasons for road accidents include poor vehicle condition, ignoring traffic rules and instruction marks on roads, signal breaking as well as over speeding, wheelie, use of mobile while driving, wrong overtaking, use of drug, wrong parking, overloading and bad road condition, he added.
He believes that the traffic accidents could be controlled in the long run if the government includes the traffic safety rules in curriculum.