It’s a well known fact that we have to deal with some of the worst traffic in the world. Bangalore and Delhi rank 6th and 7th in the “Commuter Pain Index”, a survey of the traffic conditions of major cities around the world by IBM Traffic. It’s high time something that was done about it, and instead of blaming the government or whining about it, we are the ones who should start changing. Just doing these 5 simple things can solve the traffic problems in India to a great extent.
Follow Lane Discipline
The problem with following lanes here is that no one seems to know about it. Cars, bikes, trucks , buses; they all go where they want to and their thinking is that if we can squeeze in 3-4 vehicles on a 2 lane road, good for us right? But this turns into a nightmare with buses waving around in between stops and signals, and it’s very common to see people taking a turn from the farthest lane. This absolutely wreaks havoc on the flow of traffic and is a big issue especially when an ambulance has to get through. Maintaining lane discipline won’t reduce the traffic but it will definitely make it less stressful to navigate.
Use the Indicators
The indicators seem to be some mysterious and untouchable device for most people. No one seems to realize that just by using this simple feature they can make everyone’s life on the road much easier. If you take that half a second to flick the switch, everyone around you will know your intended direction and can navigate accordingly. It also makes it safer to take turns without worrying about someone in your blind spot from crashing into you. And be sure to turn the indicators off once you’ve taken the turn; It can be very misleading.
Stop running the red lights
I understand that time is valuable, but is it more so than a person’s life? Running red lights is perhaps the most dangerous thing (along with driving drunk) you can do while driving/riding. We rationalize it by thinking that we’re saving 2-3 minutes of waiting at the signal and so we don’t think about the consequences it can have. I’ve seen a lot of close calls and a couple of really horrible incidents that could have been easily avoided if everyone just had a little more patience. And talking about patience…
Enough with the damn honking
Being stuck in traffic would be a lot more bearable if it wasn’t for the cacophony of horns from every direction. We honk constantly, whether it’s on an empty road and we’re worried about someone suddenly getting in the way or in the middle of heavy traffic just because we’re frustrated. It just irritates everyone on the road and then they start honking and the endless cycle continues. We should reserve using the horn for when it’s really required instead of using it as a way to remove frustration on others.
Don’t park wherever you want to
We treat the roads like our own backyard and we have no reservations about parking our vehicles in any empty space that we see. People turn on their hazard lights and they think this gives them a free chit about parking like idiots and obstructing the traffic. We especially need to stop parking our vehicles on those two-way, single lane roads where bottlenecks are just impossible to deal with.
It’s difficult to go against the flow, but even if a few people started following these simple rules, we can at least make a small change in the traffic problems in India. And who knows, someone else who sees you doing it might get inspired to do the same.
This article is brought to you by Wheelstreet.