Tighter Traffic Controls on Arterial Roads

Tighter Traffic Controls on Arterial RoadsTighter Traffic Controls on Arterial Roads

The Road Maintenance & Transportation Organization (RMTO) has been instructed to install 1800 new surveillance cameras to increase monitoring of 30,000 km of arterial suburban roads from the current 5,000 km, said Musa Amiri, deputy traffic police chief.

Currently, there are 400 surveillance cameras operating on the suburban main roads to record traffic violations.

“In the near future, road surveillance cameras will be upgraded to ensure better performance in recording traffic violations. At present, the cameras are able to record only 28% of offenses, and the most frequent traffic violation (52% of recorded offenses) is found to be speeding,”  IRNA quoted him as saying.

The annual cost of traffic accidents in Iran is $4 billion and nearly 20,000 people lose their lives and 400,000 are disabled in road mishaps every year.

Surveillance cameras can record seven different types of violations (5 types in cities and 2 on suburban roads).

Additionally, the cameras installed on the two main northern roads of Chalus and Haraz, are now able to record overtaking from the wrong side and other deviations, he said, adding that, “violators have to pay a penalty of $15.”

Currently, city surveillance cameras record five offenses: excess speed, running red light, entering prohibited area, entry into even-odd restricted zones and stopping on a crosswalk. On suburban main roads, they record two offenses: excessive speed and drivers’ failure to pay toll.

Amiri said using electronic surveillance equipment to control traffic offenses will help eliminate “tension between cops and drivers.”

Road accidents reached a peak during September. “In the three-day period September 17- 20, 1300 major traffic accidents took place across the country, causing 100 deaths and 1700 injuries.”

The two main causes of road accidents are sleep-deprivation and excess speed, he said, appealing to drivers not to drive if they are groggy-eyed. Using cell-phone, eating and drinking while driving also quadruples the risk of traffic accidents, and 36% of accidents are due to cars turning turtle because of rash driving.

He also pointed to the role of pedestrians in traffic accidents and said, “20% of accidents occur due to pedestrian violations such as jaywalking. Although pedestrian laws exist, they lack effectiveness as there is no suitable enforcement mechanism.”