Tipper ban lifted ‘to spur government projects’The decision to lift the restriction on plying time of tippers and lorries in Kathmandu Valley was taken to expedite the government’s infrastructure projects, a senior officer of the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division (MTPD) has said.
The decision to lift the restriction on plying time of tippers and lorries in Kathmandu Valley was taken to expedite the government’s infrastructure projects, a senior officer of the Metropolitan Traffic Police Division (MTPD) has said.
MTPD Chief Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Basant Pant said, “We gave permission for heavy vehicles to ply in the Valley considering the difficulties government’s infrastructure projects faced because of the time ban. Government projects should not face any hindrance or delays in the supply of construction materials.”
Plying of tippers and lorries, which was stopped following public outrage over these vehicles taking regularly killing public in Kathmandu Valley, resumed on Tuesday.
The resumption of ‘killer’ tippers in the Capital comes after the meeting of security forces and government officials, led by Chief District Officer of Kathmandu District Administration Office Ram Prasad Acharya.
The meeting decided to permit tippers and lorries to ply during the day, between 11am and 3pm. The new rule allows only tippers and lorries carrying materials for infrastructure development projects. “We decided to relax the ban only for vehicles involved with some projects. The number of tippers plying during the afternoon would be limited,” Acharya told The Post.
The District Administration Office will give permission to tippers, working for such projects, after the project authority recommends a particular vehicle for operations during daytime.
The District Administration Office will issue special passes to vehicles after they submit copies of citizenship certificate, driving licence and driver’s recent photograph. The current relaxation is temporary and valid up to November 16.
The tipper menace continued unchecked in the Valley over the last few months before the authority clamped the ban on their movement in mid-July.
However, before the authority could come up with special time zone, allowing heavy vehicles to ply in the capital only between 8pm to 5pm every day, tippers had killed 22 persons in various parts of the Valley.
Once the time limit was enforced, road fatalities involving tippers dropped significantly. Since then, only one death due to tipper occurred when, earlier this month, a man in Bhaktapur was killed by a tipper, which had operated before 8pm. Limiting heavy vehicle hours failed to control over-speeding, and reckless driving during the prescribed hours.
Manasi Prasai, travelling with her brother in a car, narrowly escaped on Monday night from being hit by a speeding tipper on the curve of Maitighar Mandala.
“As we were driving towards Singhadurbar around 9.30 pm, we were nearly hit by the tipper. Although my brother was quick to swerve the car, the tipper itself almost turned over. There was no traffic,” said Prasai.
The return of tippers on the streets of Kathmandu Valley has frightens Prasai. She has stopped riding her scooter fearing such incidents, she said.
“The incident on Monday night shocked me. It would have been a fatal if someone on a motorbike or a cycle had was on that curve. Now the ban has been lifted. I do not know how the authorities will monitor these vehicles during daytime,” she said.
Traffic authority admits lapses in controlling speeding tippers.
“We have not been able to monitor speeding tippers during night time. But now we will be intensifying our monitoring efforts to keep check on such vehicles,” SSP Pant said.
The authority has introduced a new time and speed limit for tippers operating at night. Now, such vehicles can ply in the Kathmandu Valley from 7pm to 7am with a speed limit of 30km per hour.
“Traffic police will launch awareness programmes, increase monitoring at night and enforce heavy fines on rule violators. We will also counsel tipper drivers at key entry points like Koteshwor and Kalanki,” SSP Pant said.