According to G Parameshwara, the home minister for Karnataka, a total of 308 incidents have occurred on the recently built Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway since it was inaugurated in March, resulting in 100 deaths and 335 injuries.
According to him, the Home Department will also write to the National Highway Authority regarding issues like a lack of signage and will take steps to control speeding along the stretch. Public Works Department Minister Satish Jarkiholi has already written to the National Highway Authority regarding the number of flaws in the project and the safety measures to be ensured.
In response to a query about the rise in accidents on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway, the Minister addressed the issue.
Home Minister Parameshwara said, “If you look at the Bengaluru-Mysuru Express Highway there are a lot of shortcomings. There are no sign boards to indicate curves, narrow lanes. This has resulted in over speeding, as the road is good, with the same speed the motorists try to navigate the curves, leading to mishaps and deaths.”
He stated there were 62 incidents in March, immediately following the inauguration, with 20 confirmed deaths and 63 reported injuries.
There were 75 accidents in April, resulting in 23 deaths and 83 injuries. There were 94 incidents in May that resulted in 29 deaths and 93 injuries, and 77 accidents in June that resulted in 28 deaths and 96 injuries.
“A total of 308 accidents have taken place along the stretch since March to June, leading to 100 deaths and 335 injuries,” he said, adding that if things are not corrected immediately, more people will lose their lives.
According to the Home Minister, ADGP Traffic recently conducted inspections at locations in Ramanagara and Mandya districts along the stretch of the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway as per his instructions, and he has provided some inputs. He claimed that numerous people informed him about the deaths during his recent visit to Mysuru and urged him to take action.
He emphasised the steps being taken to prevent accidents on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway. He stated that the authorities have been instructed to put these steps into action to control the situation.
Listing out measures, Home Minister Parameshwara said, “Steps are being taken to increase highway patrolling vehicles along the expressway. If patrolling vehicles are deployed every 30 to 35 km they can keep watch on those speeding and control them, and also they can ensure that vehicles don’t park along the stretch.”
He also said sign boards indicating deviations or exits which connect villages along the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway will be installed. “They were not installed earlier.” Regarding motorists’ lack of lane discipline, Home Minister Parameshwara said steps will be taken to ensure lane discipline is followed.
He added that a fence must be put in place to stop pedestrians from crossing the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway. Although they had been established earlier, several locations close to communities had them removed. The National Highway Authority has received instructions in this regard. He continued that attempts would be taken to install street lighting along the section, particularly where the highway joins underpasses.
The Minister continued by saying that many drivers need to be made aware of traffic regulations and that the RTOs are giving licences despite improperly conducting traffic regulation examinations; the government is taking action to fix this while raising awareness among people.
On March 12, Prime Minister Narendra Modi formally inaugurated the 118-kilometre Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway project.
According to officials at the time, the journey time between the two cities will be cut down from around three hours to about 75 minutes. According to them, the NH-275 segment between Bengaluru, Nidaghatta, and Mysuru was six-laned as part of the 8,480 crore project, which will spur socio-economic growth in the area.