Road accident claims 12 lives daily in Bangladesh

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Dhaka, Feb 25 (UNI) Road accidents are on the rise in Bangladesh claiming at least 12 lives a day due to limited roads and rash driving, according to a study.

Bangladesh Roads and Highway Department (RHD), in its report said about 5,000 people were killed in road accidents in the country last year. The figure was almost double the casualty figure of 2006.

Most of the victims of the accidents were pedestrians and youth, below the age of 15. The number of injured was almost triple.

The RHD report, released today at a seminar on ''Human Rights and Safe Life: Road Accident Perspective'' said many of the injured were rendered jobless as they lost their limbs and other body parts in the accidents.

A UK-based organisation, TRL, said the road accidents not only caused loss of human lives but also incurred economic losses. It also said the accidents incurred a loss of nearly Tk 5,000 crore, which was equivalent to 1.5 per cent of Bangladesh's GDP.

It was also told in the seminar that road accident was a ''man-made disaster'', as 1.2 million people were killed in road accidents every day across the world.

Former Inspector General of Bangladesh Police ASM Shahjahan said about 600 new public vehicles came out on the streets in the sprawling city of Dhaka every year, but the streets were limited, raising the number of road accidents.

Mr Shajahan was critical of the male drivers for rash driving and ignoring the traffic rules leading to frequent accidents. He preferred recruitment of more female drivers as they were ''genetically much tolerant and law abiding''.

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