Heavy vehicles line up at Subernarekha bridge after end of no-entry hours in Jamshedpur on Thursday. (Animesh Sengupta)
On Monday evening while walking home from a temple, Usha Sharma (45) was run over by a truck at Jamshedpur’s Golmuri minutes before the no-entry restriction became effective.
The traffic police have now decided to deploy additional constables at the entry and exit points in the steel city from next week to prevent fatal mishaps around the time no-entry regulations are enforced.
No-entry regulation for heavy vehicles is effective thrice a day — 6am to 9am, 12.30pm to 2.30pm and 5pm to 10pm.
A majority of truck drivers, who keep waiting for the no-entry period to end, tend to drive at breakneck speed to soon reach their destination.
Similarly, they press on the accelerator to enter or move out of the city before the restriction comes into force.
As such, the risk of mishaps runs high before the start or end of the no-entry periods.
The entry and exit points at Sundernagar, Dimna Chowk in Mango and Kharkai Link Road also get congested right after the no-entry regulation is lifted, as a large number of heavy vehicles make their way in and out of the city.
Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Akhilesh Kumar Jha said that around 25 to 30 traffic constables and officers — roughly twice the number at present — would man the entry and exit points throughout the no-entry periods.
“Once additional traffic police constables are deployed at these points and other strategic locations, drivers of heavy vehicles will tend to drive slow, which will reduce chances of road mishaps,” Jha said.
The SSP said that if drivers were found driving in a rash manner to avoid the no-entry period, they would be prosecuted.
He pointed out that senior traffic police officers would monitor the movement of heavy vehicles prior to the no-entry period and take action against erring drivers.
According to traffic police norms, a driver has to cough up a penalty of Rs 2,000 for violation of the no-entry restriction.
The accident involving the middle-aged woman on Monday at Golmuri Chowk had angered local residents, who blockaded the intersection and even damaged auto-rickshaws that were passing by.
Last month, a 50-year-old man was killed when a trailer hit the scooter he was riding near the Sitaramdera roundabout just after the no-entry period was over.
A senior traffic official pointed out that the city has so far witnessed five fatal road accidents that occurred just prior to or after the no-entry periods this year.