At least 207 were killed and 289 others were injured in 158 road accidents across Bangladesh in 11 days before and after Eid-ul-Azha, according to a report from the Road Safety Foundation.
The report said approximately 81.64 per cent of the dead were aged between 18 and 65. It stated that 29 of the dead were women and 17 were children.
The private organisation’s report compiled data from seven newspapers, five online news websites and television stations, reports bdnews24.com.
In the 11 days between Jul 14 and Jul 24, the daily mortality rate from road accidents was 18.81, according to a press release from the organisation.
Last year, the 14 days before and after Eid-ul-Azha saw 187 accidents, resulting in the deaths of 229 -- an average mortality rate of 16.35 a day.
According to these calculations, the mortality rate rose 15.04 per cent from the previous year.
“People’s movement is under greater control due to the coronavirus pandemic,” the press release said. “But the toll from accidents remains worrying.”
Most road accidents are due to mismanagement in the road transport sector, the organisation said. As such, the road transport laws need to be enforced strictly, the organisation said.
Eighty-seven people died in 76 motorcycle accidents, which means that motorcycles account for 48.10 per cent of accidents and 42.02 per cent of the deaths.
The report also noted that there were two river accidents before and after Eid, leaving two dead and 26 injured. Another two people were killed in rail accidents.
The report also noted several main causes for road accidents: substandard vehicles, speeding, reckless driving, incompetent drivers, drivers with physical and mental health issues, lack of fixed wages and working hours, low-speed traffic on highways, reckless motorcycle driving, people’s tendency to ignore or be ignorant of traffic laws, weak traffic management, lack of BRTA capacity to handle major issues and corruption in the public transport sector.
The organisation also made several recommendations on how to reduce the number of accidents and deaths. These include the training of drivers, fixed salaries and working hours for drivers, increasing the BRTA’s capacity and the overall implementation of the Road Transport Act 2018.