A total of 39 persons have lost their lives and 143 were injured in accidents on the Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Expressway since its launch in December 2022 till the end of April this year, a senior police official has said.
Addressing the media on Friday, the State Highway Police official said "road hypnotism" was one of the causes of these accidents.
Road hypnosis, also called white line fever, is an altered mental state faced by drivers due to "automaticity" or the process of doing things automatically without actively thinking about the steps involved.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on December 11, 2022 inaugurated the first phase of the expressway between Nagpur and Shirdi that covers a distance of 520 km. The length of the total project, officially named as 'Hindu Hrudaysamrat Balasaheb Thackeray Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg', is 701 km. The project is aimed at reducing the travel time from Nagpur to Mumbai to seven hours.
"There were 358 accidents on the Samruddhi Corridor between December 12, 2022 and April 30, 2023. These include 24 accidents in which 39 persons were killed, while 143 were injured in 54 accidents. The State Highway Police is in the process of tackling the issue," he said.
"Across Maharashtra, there were 15,224 deaths in road crashes in 2022. Of these deaths, 57 per cent were of two-wheeler and three-wheeler riders. Pedestrian deaths accounted for 21 per cent. Some 43 per cent accidents took place on Other District Roads (ODR) across the state," the official added.
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