India

SC gives guidelines for those who help people in road accidents

30 Mar 2016 | By Vaneet Randhawa

The SC endorsed the Centre's proposal to defend Good Samaritans, who assist those hurt in road accidents, from being needlessly harassed by the police or any other authority.

The SC directed the central government to give broad publicity to these guidelines.

The move came so that people don't shy away from helping those in distress for the fear of being victimised by the authorities.

In context: Making Indian roads safer

Introduction Ministry seeks SC help to lay road safety guidelines

The Road Transport Ministry had said in a statement that because of the absence of any 'statutory backing' it was difficult to maintain road safety.

The Ministry had, therefore, approached the SC to issue guidelines on road safety.

The guidelines would be binding on all states and Union Territories until a law would be enacted by the Centre to this effect.

23 Apr 2014SC appoints a committee to monitor road safety

A SC bench appointed a 3-member committee to monitor the Central and State governments on matters concerning road safety.

Central and State government departments responsible for road safety issues were asked to submit their reports to the committee in 3 months.

The report would entail information on licensing, use of road safety devices, limits of vehicle use (passenger carrying capacity) etc.

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SC committee makes recommendations for road safety

Recommendations SC committee makes recommendations for road safety

The SC committee gave 12 major recommendations for road safety.

These included establishing State Road Safety Councils and a provision that protected bystanders helping people from police harassment.

The committee also recommended strengthening of the laws relating to "drunken driving, over-speeding, red light jumping and helmet or seat belt laws."

The governments were also asked to evolve a protocol for identification of black spots.

30 Mar 2016SC gives guidelines for those who help people in road accidents

74% bystanders don't help in road accidents: Survey

A national survey by the Save Life Foundation, an NGO which is dedicated to advancing road safety in India, affirmed that "74% of bystanders are unlikely to help victims of a serious injury."

30 Mar 2016Other guidelines provided by SC

The nucleus of the SC guidelines was that no onlooker rushing to the rescue of an accident victim should be "subject to civil or criminal liability and/or be forced to be a witness."

Moreover, the court ruled that the disclosure of personal information by the good samaritans or offering to be a witness to an accident would be completely voluntary.