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A safe corridor for two-wheelers

The introduction of a two-wheeler lane on Periyar EVR (Poonamallee) High Road has received favourable response, says P. Oppili

The introduction of a two-wheelers-only corridor near the central median on a nine-km stretch of the Periyar EVR (Poonamallee) High Road — from Muthusamy Bridge point to Koyambedu round about — is seen by two-wheeler riders as a favourable traffic regulation.

Capping the new traffic management system was the de-linking of two-wheelers and the autorickshaws.

Many regular users of the arterial road appreciate the city traffic police for the exclusive two-wheeler corridor and said the absence of autorickshaws in their midst made a real difference. Now the motorcyclists say they feel safer and drive at their own speed.

Police officers say that as the road width was smaller the two-lane system was introduced instead of the three-lane system being implemented on Anna Salai.

Many road-users who welcome the initiative say that an autorickshaw occupied the road space almost equivalent to a small car. Added to this is the offensive driving of the autorickshaws that could result in an accident. Hence, it is only proper to club the autorickshaws with the non-commercial and light commercial vehicles, and not with motorcycles, they say.

Explaining the rationale behind introducing the concept, M. Ravi, Deputy Commissioner of Police, North (Traffic), says a study conducted by the traffic police revealed that two-wheelers constituted 50 per cent of the vehicular population on this busy road. Introducing a separate lane reduced the incidence of fracas between drivers of two-wheelers and other vehicles. The journey time for the distance had come down by 10 minutes, he says.

However, some road users note that unlike Anna Salai, this road has many right turns till Koyambedu. Invariably, the Metropolitan Transport Corporation and other long-distance buses swerve into the two-wheelers' path while turning right and paralysing traffic movement.

At some key junctions, as those near Sydenhams Road, five or six buses bunch themselves, leading to the same result. Here the system fails and the only way for ensuring better regulation is posting more traffic policemen, the road users say.

Mr. Ravi said that plans are afoot to increase the negotiation distance from the junctions. This will help the vehicles to turn right without affecting the movement of other vehicles.

On initiating action against lane jumping, Mr. Ravi said the system had been introduced on a trial basis for a month. Till then, the police would advise and caution the violators.

Given the response from road-users, some vehicle drivers feel the system could be extended to Anna Salai, which too witnesses frequent fracas involving two-wheeler riders and others.

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