Saturday, February 17, 2007

Enforcement is the Key

After much dilly dallying, Tamil Nadu has made helmets compulsory for both the two wheeler driver and the pillion rider. This is a no brainer really. Study after study has proven that helmets save lives. But what is common sense has not been common practice. Most common reasons cited for not wearing helmets are inconvenience, hair loss etc., But then, if the head will not survive in an accident where is the question of hair?

I have long advocated (2) for tougher helmet laws in Chennai. But, I am also skeptical as to how this law will be enforced. Will the police use this new law as another extortion avenue or genuinely enforce the new helmet rule and save lives?

ps: I don't think the order on helmets is in force yet. Not sure what's is the hold up..


  1. To give publicity to this, all media such as newspaper, TV and radio must, as a community service, give publicity in their own way so wearing helmet becomes way of life with all bikers, motorized or not.

    How about wearing seat belt in automobiles? Will it take several driver and passenger deaths before it is considered essential by the Govt.


  2. Though I am not sure either about the enforcement part..I commend the Govt. for doing this.

    Even if they can save one's worth it.

  3. Raman
    Unfortunately those kinds of focussed activities are lacking..
    Seat Belts.. again awareness is lacking on this front as well..

    yup.. I share your skepticism..

  4. Everything happens in India on the principle of 'Chaos Theory'.
    You cannot induce minor order and expect the Chaos to go away.

    What is the point in wearing a helmet, when the half awake State
    Public Transport driver, or the Water tank driver can run you over driving the wrong way?

    What is the point when the sidewalks for pedastrians are taken over by two and three wheeler traffic dodging street vendors ?

    What is the point when the traffic cop who is suppose to regulate traffic is taking asylem in a tea shop sipping the free brew ?

    What is the point when there is no one stops for children to cross the street and there are no guards ?

    What is the point when the painted lane markers make no sense to anyone ? Frankly I don't know why they bother to paint ?

    What is the point when there are million police in uniform show up like a swarm of bees to stop the traffic to let one braindead minister and his sidekicks to pass by and create a super mess ?

    You can't induce rules from an orderly society to a place like India.

    After my recent trip I am more convinced than ever that only 'divinely intervention' can keep them moving. I think taking their two hands off from the handle of their vehicles and jesturing 'surrender' to the zillion or so GODs on their way to and from wherever does more good than a 'cheap' helmet which comes of before the head hit the road!

    The payback for the ones who religiously perform 'Ayudha Puja' to show respect for the spirits which moves the wheels protects them with or without a 'cheap helmet' I am sure.

  5. As long as I had been in India, I have used helmets while riding a motorcycle in scotching heat. Having extensively used helmet, my hair is still there on my head. Many have questioned me, how I could use it, while I was using it. But in TN, always the successive government has the habit of abolishing all the rules made by the previous Government and Helmet rule was the first one to be wiped. The entire state has seen it before. It was again during DMK period, wearing helmet was made compulsory. Famous Neuro surgeon Dr B.Ramamurthy appeared in the Tele, and explained how he could not save many who had died in accidents. He told then, that if they had worn helmet, they would not have died. Our people fail to understand the importance of helmet. I have personally lost few friends who would have been saved if they had worn helmets.

    Hope the rule stays for good and the following Governments do not show their power on such rules which help the public.

  6. The enforcement comes into effect only from June 1, 2007