Reckless ride on mountain pass raises safety concerns




A section of ambulance drivers, who drive recklessly, violating the speed limit and lane traffic disciplines, has emerged as a safety concern for passengers on the Thamarassery Ghat Road. Complaints are on the rise against the suspected misuse of emergency sirens and lights by such operators even during non-emergency services and return journeys.

Misusing the privilege and considerations they get on the road, some of the drivers are also accused of creating a huge scare on the hairpin curves with their zigzag race, causing damage to other vehicles. Those who question the risky ride in the absence of any medical emergency are frequently abused on the road apart from being dragged into fake cases.

“On Sunday, a group of youths and an ambulance driver were caught for such an on-road scuffle on the route. The driver reportedly turned aggressive when the youths questioned his dangerous driving and the damage it created to their vehicle,” said a member of the Thamarassery Ghat Road Protection Committee. The heated arguments later led to an open fight on the road, bringing the whole issue to the police station, he said.

Committee members said that they were taking care to ensure a smooth ride for ambulances on the mountain pass by clearing the road during emergency situations. According to them, the majority of the passengers were found cooperating with such efforts to avert accidents. The misuse of such privileges by a small section of ambulance drivers will only break the trust of other passengers, they said.

Though there were demands to intensify police patrol on the mountain pass to track the traffic rule violators, the shortage of staff was reportedly preventing the rural police from considering it. Many a time, the rash drivers were found escaping from legal actions. Meanwhile, police sources said a flawless surveillance camera system would soon be a reality on the route to track vehicles violating speed limits and lane discipline.


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