Safe Roads and Transport Alliance Advocating in Bangladesh

The Safe Roads and Transport Alliance (SROTA), Bangladesh, is a multisectoral collaboration with a purpose to assist government and nongovernmental actors towards Bangladesh’s realization of SDG 11, between specifically the goals of improved road safety and safe, accessible, affordable and sustainable transport systems. It includes Alliance members BRAC and the Center for Injury Prevention and Research, Bangladesh. SROTA pursues its mission through defined action plans to avoid duplication of existing initiatives and prioritize credible data, cross-sectoral dialogue and strengthened accountability mechanisms. It seeks a holistic approach to SDG 11.

A delegation from SROTA recently presented recommendations to the Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Division of the Ministry of Law Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Government of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh. The recommendations included:

  • Bringing changes in the title of the RTA 2018 including making the preamble more issue specific and inclusion of definitions of additional important terminologies;
  • Including important issues addressed by the Motor Vehicle Ordinance 1983;
  • Introducing a separate “Good Samaritan Law”;
  • Modernizing the road crash investigation system (police are responsible for crash investigation but are not provided with specialist training);
  • Setting up of an independent tribunal to deal with compensation claims of road crash victims;
  • Making the road safety committees at national and subnational level more effective and ensuring representation of concerned stakeholders;
  • Making provisions for formation of “road safety fund”;
  • Setting up a grievance redressal system
  • Ensuring increased participation of women in the management of transport sector and ensure their safety in public transport;
  • Taking special measures including architectural adjustments of the vehicles to making friendly for women, children, aged and persons with disability.

Dr. Hossain Zillur Rahman, the convener of SROTA talking about the issue said that “Road crashes, whether caused by human or mechanical failure, negligence, or a combination of other factors, must be dealt with through prevention, attention, and compensation with legislation, effective enforcement and road user behavior working shoulder to shoulder.”

The Road Safety Act and Road and Transport Act 2018 are being drafted in Bangladesh and SROTA is calling for greater consultation with stakeholders.