In a unique initiative to abet the trend of accidents on Lucknow-Agra Expressway, the Uttar Pradesh government has reportedly started to impose heavy fine on all the speeding drivers. According to an Indian Express report, the new mechanism has already been put in action and around 25 challans have been issued. The report said that two toll plazas –at Agra (21 km) and Lucknow (290 km) – will help the authorities to keep a tab on the erring drivers. The Uttar Pradesh Expressways Industrial Development Authority said that those covering the 300 km distance between these two toll plazas within three hours will be fined.
Since the 2017 launch, the Expressway has witnessed over 1,900 deaths. Earlier in April, an RTI reply had revealed that in just 90 days, 36 people lost their lives, 222 others were injured in over 400 accidents on the Expressway. Advocate KC Jain had filed a Right to Information plea seeking details of accidents on the Agra-Lucknow Expressway.
According to the data made available by the UP Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA), between August 2017 and March 2018 there were 858 accidents causing 100 deaths. Between April 2018 and December 2018, 1,113 accidents claimed 91 lives. In 20 months, 2,368 accidents claimed 227 lives and maimed many. In every quarter of the year, some 2.5 lakh vehicles use the Expressway, generating around Rs 18 crore in toll each month, but the YEIDA has not been able to spend money on installing automatic number plate reader cameras and other equipments at every 20 km stretch to monitor speed violations.
In May, one person was killed and 24 people were injured after a bus rammed into a parked truck on Lucknow-Agra Expressway in Uttar Pradeh’s Unnao.The accident that took place under Hasanganj Police Station area is being probed by the officials. Lucknow-Agra Expressway has become an accident-prone area. An RTI filed in March earlier this year revealed that four accidents took place on the highway on daily basis. According to 2017 statistics from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), one accident due to dangerous driving is reported every two hours from Uttar Pradesh.