Using judicial process to bridge the existing gaps in the legal framework around road safety and seek interventions to provide interim relief until the problem can be addressed legislatively.
India has the highest number of road crash deaths in the world, as a direct result of the almost complete lack of regulation and inefficacy of the existing laws and regulations pertaining to road safety, particularly with respect to vehicles that are stationary, or stalled on streets, Highways and Expressways; and vehicles transporting iron rods, angles, pipes, poles and other construction material, which protrude outside the body of the vehicle.
To address these deficiencies and gaps in the principal legislations around road safety in India – the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989 – SLF filed a Writ Petition in 2013 for the enforcement of the fundamental rights guaranteed by Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India. These rights include ensuring safety on roads so that lives are not imperilled by obstructive stalled and stationary vehicles, or vehicles carrying protruding construction material.
About the Petition
In 2013, SaveLIFE Foundation filed a petition (Writ Petition 427 of 2013 – SaveLIFE Foundation & Anr. versus Union of India & Anr) before the Supreme Court in order to:
Strike down proviso to Rule 93(8) of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules which allows for protruding rods, mandating that they be carried only in covered trailers and fixing criminal liability on violators once the rule is struck down, and
Ensure uniform regulations, particularly in respect of stationary or stalled vehicles on highways and expressways.
Impact of the Legal Intervention
Banning vehicles carrying protruding rods or load
9,087 people were killed in road crashes that were caused due to collision with vehicles carrying protruding rods and load.
Ironically, the proviso to Rule 93(8) of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, allowed the goods carriage to carry poles/rods or indivisible load protruding till a distance of one metre beyond the rear most point of the motor vehicle. In its PIL, SLF sought omission of the proviso to Rule 93(8) of CMVR.
Based on SLF’s PIL, the Government of India, on March 5th 2014, issued a notification striking down the proviso in Rule 93(8) of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989 thereby putting a ban on vehicles carrying protruding rods or protruding load.
SLF has taken this initiative to prevent such trucks from causing further road crash deaths and injuries in India.
Be a part of the campaign.
REPORT A TRUCK
Banning stationary/stalled vehicles on highways and expressways
In 2015, 4,124 people were killed and 12,800 people were injured in 13, 292 road crashes due to collision with stationary vehicles.
The existing legislation and enforcement is inadequate to address the problem of stalled/stationary vehicles. The necessity of addressing these issues has become compelling on account of large number of road crashes as well as fatalities.
In its PIL, SLF has sought directions to the government to adopt uniform regulations, particularly with respect to stationary or stalled vehicles on highways and expressways.