India has six percent of world’s road accidents: report

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NEW DELHI, Aug 8, 2006 (AFP) – India accounts for six percent of global road accidents but has only one percent of the world’s vehicles, a safety research consultant said Tuesday. The country has the world’s fourth highest annual tally of road accidents, said Jeya Padmanaban of consultancy JP Research, according to a Press Trust of India news report.

Road accidents are the second biggest killer of young Indians, with more than 300 people killed daily, she added ahead of a road safety conference in the southern city of Chennai.

The infrequent use of seat belts and helmets and the poor enforcement of traffic laws were among the factors contributing to India’s high accident rate, she said.

The Indian health ministry said that in 2005 more than 80,000 Indians died in road accidents, with 1.2 million seriously injured.

The World Health Organization has projected that by 2020 road accidents will account for 546,000 deaths per year in India.