February 2017 records lowest number of road accidents - 4 killed in 23 accidents in Siliguri
February 2017 recorded the lowest number of fatal road accidents compared to that of the corresponding months in the past four years in the state. According to officers of the West Bengal Traffic Police, the state-wide awareness campaign 'Safe Drive, Save Life' that was launched by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in July 2016 has helped in bringing down the number of road accidents. According to a data prepared by the police, 462 people were killed in road accidents in the area under the state traffic police. While in Kolkata Police area, 59 people were killed in the first two months of this year. In the area under the state police that include Howrah, Bidhannagar, Barrackpore, Siliguri and Asansol-Durgapur commissionerates, 991 road accidents took place in February in which 462 were killed. Compared to that of February 2016, number of accidents and death has gone down by 142 and 77 respectively in February 2017. Areas where number of accidents have gone down in February include Siliguri, Jhargram, Burdwan, Hooghly, Jalpaiguri, East and West Midnapore. In Siliguri, the number of accidents has gone down by 50 percent in just one month. In January, lives of 18 people were killed in Jalpaiguri while the number was nine in the next month. Similarly, in Siliguri, as many as four people were killed in 23 road accidents in February compared to that of 12 in January. In Burdwan, where 50 deaths due to road accidents get recorded every month, there were reports of 35 people being killed in road accidents in February. It may be mentioned that in each of the first six months of every year, more than 500 fatal cases get recorded. But in both January and February this year, the figure didn't touch 500. In 2014, the total number of accidents was 12,865 in which 5,927 people were killed while 6,234 people were killed in 13,208 accidents in 2015. In 2016, as many as 6,544 people were killed in 13,580 accidents in the state. According to a senior police officer, the total number of road accidents and fatal cases would go down in 2017 as the state government has taken various measures to reduce road accidents besides creating awareness among the people.