The national road developer has decided to construct four rest houses for bus and truck drivers on highways to help ensure road safety.
Officials said on Saturday the proposed resting places would be built on four highways in Cumilla, Habiganj, Magura and Sirajganj districts.
To this end, the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) has recently sought approval of a Tk 2.26-billion project from the Planning Commission.
It has undertaken the scheme following a directive from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
"In the first phase, we've decided to build four rest houses and parking areas for drivers," said a senior RHD official.
"In the future," he said, "we'll also build such structures on other national highways."
Currently, there is no resting facility for drivers on highways, resulting in their long-time drive and constituting risks of road accidents.
According to the Bangladesh Passengers Welfare Organisation, an estimated 7,221 people died for road accidents nationally in the 2018 calendar year.
RHD will build the rest houses at Nimshar on Dhaka-Chittagong highway, at Jagadishpur on Dhaka-Sylhet highway, at Pachila on Dhaka-Rangpur highway and at Laxmikandar on Dhaka-Khulna highway.
According to the official, RHD has already acquired land in Cumilla and Sirajganj for the purpose.
Land would be acquired at the remaining two places soon, he said.
The rest houses will have modern amenities like overnight stay facility, TV, food and tea/coffee, and parking space.
The official said the two-storey buildings would also have workshop facility for vehicles.
Last year, the premier instructed the authorities that bus drivers and truckers should not drive more than five hours at a time.
They should take rest or be changed after five hours of driving, she directed. According to the seventh five-year plan, the country will reduce road accidents by 50 per cent by the year 2020.
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