Perils Of Roadside Parking In Thiruvananthapuram

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   (2012-07-07 00:00:00)

Lack of adequate municipal parking lots in the city often forces drivers of commercial purpose vehicles to park their trucks, vans, and buses on roadsides at night.

Such haphazard parking on the sides of main thoroughfares, including National and State Highways, has contributed significantly to the increase in night-time accidents in the district, the police have said.

Multi-axle trucks transporting cars to vehicle showrooms on either side of the congested Kazhakuttam-Eenchakkal National Highway bypass usurp a considerable part of the carriageway on most nights. So do earthmovers, mobile cranes, and fuel and water tankers.

Much of the road space at Thampanoor, Palayam, Bakery Junction, and several other key junctions in the city is often taken over at night by drivers of buses conducting inter-State services.

A traffic management expert attached to the National Transportation Planning and Research Centre said more than 2,000 cargo vehicles entered the district through the Amaravila check-post near Parassala. Most of these vehicles were bound for markets and industrial parks in the city. Owners of private parking lots charged exorbitantly for the service provided. Hence, most drivers of cargo trucks opted to park their vehicles on roadsides.

The police said there had been several instances of motorists, including two-wheeler riders, narrowly avoiding collision with vehicles parked on the roadsides in the district.

In 2005, a car had rammed a truck parked on the roadside near the Parassala check-post, killing all of its five occupants.

A recent audit by the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau to detect the misuse of piped water had reported that the crew of commercial vehicles drew treated water in significant quantities from public taps to service their automobiles.

The High Court had earlier asked the law enforcement to take adequate steps to prevent such chaotic parking of vehicles that potentially jeopardised road safety. However, the court direction seemed to have remained more on paper.