“it is a shared responsibility”

People both traveling in private and public transport might have observed the increase in traffic in and around Colombo during the past few days. Well for some of you every day and every where. Thought I would share some of my thoughts on this.


Let me start asking few questions from you; assume that you are in a huge traffic pile and at a long queue at the traffic lights at the Borella Junction. Most importantly you’re late. You see the green light and start moving behind the vehicles ahead of you and suddenly you see the amber light of the traffic post and you are the only one behind the line and about to jump the traffic light; do you stop immediately or do you take the liberty of accelerating your vehicle and not stop at the lights?


You know that the next junction is 100 meters ahead of you and you know that out of the three lanes the one on the right is only for the vehicles turning right, you are intended to drive straight and you see that there are only one or two vehicles on the lane on the right and decide to go on that lane and come up to the traffic light. Suddenly you see the signal for the vehicles moving straight is green but the vehicle ahead of you are not moving, but waiting to turn right; and at this point do you start to sound your horn or try your best to get to the second or rather the middle lane amidst of the vehicles moving straight or wait patiently till the vehicle ahead of you, get the green signal to start moving and turn right?


You are travelling on the baseline road at 60 Kmph and suddenly see a person waiting or attempting to cross the road through a pedestrian crossing; do you slow down and ultimately stop for that person to cross (also signally the other vehicles coming on your side and behind that you are about to stop) or noticing that there are no vehicles behind you and thinking that this person will cross after you, you continue to speed without stopping or continue to speed as if you didn’t see this person?


For the people travelling along the Galle Road from Colombo to Galle might have noticed that there is a lot of traffic and is a good ground for lot of accidents. But people tend to put the blame on the SLT and the Water Board for digging the road every day and keep on laying their fiber optics and the water lines, which have actually involved lot of cutting, digging, filling, digging again, filling again and etc, is the reason for traffic and accidents.


I completely disagree on this argument. It’s actually not the excavation being done on the roads makes vehicles meet with accidents, but people driving the vehicles. Well I agree that those excavations harm the smooth and even road and ultimately ruin it. It’s actually the person travelling on the road who doesn’t think of the other who creates the entire scenario. Stopping the vehicle suddenly with out signaling, prohibited parking on either sides of the road, travelling on the wrong side of the road (including the pedestrians and the vehicles), restless driving, etc.


Most of the above choices are up to you to decide, but it’s high time to realize that it’s not only you who is travelling on these roads, but also the others. This discipline coming from only one person travelling on the road, will not help at all. It’s a responsibility of each and every one travelling on the road, who has to think about one’s own action as it affects every single person travelling on the road and their lives, with or without you knowing.


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