Road accidents dip in Gujarat during lockdown

Ahmedabad: Road accidents in Gujarat came down by 71 per cent during the coronavirus-enforced lockdown as compared to normal days, according to an analysis by an emergency services agency.

From about 398 daily cases of accidents in normal times, the number fell to 115 during the lockdown period, says the study conducted by GVK Emergency Management and Research Institute (EMRI) that operates the free 108 ambulance service in the state.

A comparative analysis of calls received for various emergencies on normal days and during the lockdown period showed that incidents of vehicular trauma, or accidents, fell sharply by 71 per cent, mainly due to lack of vehicles on roads, it said.

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However, cases of non-vehicular trauma rose from 281 on normal days to 400 during lockdown, showing more people were physically or sexually assaulted, or fell down and hurt themselves, it said.

“This is surprising, and goes on to show that more people came out on roads despite lockdown,” GVK EMRI spokesperson Ashok Soni said.

Besides, the number of people calling for ambulance after suffering from high fever doubled during this period, mainly due to coronavirus concerns, the agency said.

The number of calls received for ambulance services during the lockdown between March 25 and April 25 in the state rose mainly due to restrictions on the movement of othervehicles, as per the analysis.

The 108 ambulance service received about 3,854 calls on the daily basis for various emergency cases during the lockdown period, compared to 3,073 calls during normal days, showing an increase of 25 per cent, it said.

Out of 1.55 lakh emergencies served since March 18 by the 108 service, 10,272 were related to suspected coronavirus cases, the agency said.

Dedicated ambulances were deployed for suspected coronavirus patients, with medical technicians and drivers being trained and provided protective gears as per guidelines, it said.

As many as two emergency medical technicians tested positive for coronavirus, it said, adding that both of them later recovered.

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