…to address over-speeding and road accidents

Phub Dem | Paro

With settlements along highways and satellite towns in Paro growing by the year, a growing number of locals and animals have become victims of vehicle accidents.

A stretch of straight road from town to Lamgong is an accident-prone zone. Locals and police consider the cause as over-speeding and headlight reflectors blinding other road users, especially at night.

Last month, a woman was hit by a car in Nemjo while watering her flowers. She is now rendered immobile and bound to a wheelchair.

Considering the risk of road accidents and other illegal activities such as robbery, hit and run cases, Paro police proposed to install streetlights in satellite towns including Lamgong, Jitsiphu, and Shaba during the recent dzongkhag tshogdu.

Superintendent Colonel Dorji Wangchuk said that as per the police records criminal activities and road accidents were rampant in town and satellite town areas.

He said that the streetlights could help prevent such cases and accidents. “The lights will benefit the residents as well.”

For instance, he said that road accidents between Nemjo and Lamgong increased every year and the accidents were rampant at night due to poor visibility owing to headlights. “Often pedestrians and animals are hit when drivers fail to judge the distance due to powerful headlights of passing vehicles.”

A resident of Nemjo, Yeshi said that it was risky to cross the road at night as drivers drive recklessly. “Cars banged into horses and cattle many times.”

Considering the threat of over-speeding, locals of Nemjo asked for speed breakers on the Nemjo-Lamgong stretch.

However, Lungnyi Gup Jamtsho said, as per the rules, there was no provision for speed breakers or zebra crossings on highways. “The installation of street lights could address the problem.”

Without enough budget in gewogs, he said that the municipality should consider the proposal. “Besides addressing over-speeding issues, the lights will solve other issues such as robbery, vandalism, illegal dumping of waste, among others.”

Jamtsho said, “With no tourism business, horses were left free, and many died in road accidents.”

DT recommended the dzongkhag administration and municipal office to look into the issue and plan the budgets accordingly.

Edited by Tshering Palden