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Govt of Rajasthan to implement Data-driven Systems approach to Road Safety in Collaboration with IIT Madras

This collaboration will involve various stakeholder Departments in Govt. of Rajasthan involved in road safety including Public Works Department (PWD), National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), police, health and medical services, among other agencies.

Elaborating on this engagement, Prof. Venkatesh Balasubramanian, Faculty In-Charge, Rehabilitation Bioengineering Group (RBG) Labs, Department of Engineering Design, IIT Madras, who is coordinating this initiative, said, “Roads are shared asset and the safety on them is a collective responsibility of all the stakeholders. However, without having an overt and specific responsibility, it can be easily lost between the gaps. Therefore, it is quintessential to develop a good strategy based on data. It is, therefore, necessary to have a design thinking approach to solve the problem by not just identifying the issues but implementing changes that are sustainable in the local conditions.”

Prof. Venkatesh Balasubramanian added, “The breadth of this engagement is a testament to the benefit it will bring to both the partners. With requisite orientation and training programmes, the stakeholders from the State of Rajasthan are expected to develop both capacity and capability. This will be essential in implementing and using the information from the magnum opus of road accident data from MoRTH, i.e., ‘Integrated Road Accident Database’ (iRAD).”

Some of the other key projects on road safety taken of RBG Labs at IIT Madras include:

Ø Working with National Health Mission Tamil Nadu, helped build a unique Trauma Care program, TAEI (Tamil Nadu Accident and Emergency care Initiative). RBG Labs had advised in designing and implementing this unique trauma care program that uses principles of lean manufacturing

Ø Working with the Tamil Nadu Police, helped improve the data collection process of road traffic accidents called RADMS (Road Accident Database Management System). The resultant application TARA (Traffic Accident Reporting App) was geared to have an integrated approach to accident data collection.

Ø MoRTH adopted this integrated approach for data collection where in-depth data can be simultaneously collected from various domain specialist agencies called iRAD (Integrated Road Accident Database). RBG Labs, IIT Madras and NICSI are currently in the process of developing and implementing nationally

Ø Based on a technology transfer from RBG Labs, IIT Madras to M/s Harita Seating Systems Limited, an IoT based ubiquitous monitoring of driver presence, performance and behaviour monitoring system called the Harita Intellisea™ was launched in 2017 and won the auto-component of the year in 2018.

Congratulating the initiative for being proactive, Shri. Giridhar Aramane, Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), Government of India, said, “Safe Roads are critical for safe movement of goods and people that will result in a vibrant economy. MoRTH has been backing RBG Labs at IIT Madras to take its structured data-driven system approach to improve road safety pan-India. We look forward to seeing a major impact in Rajasthan from this initiative. We wish all the stakeholders the best to make our roads safe for all.”

The Rehabilitation Bioengineering Group is an interdisciplinary group with competencies in Human Factors and Transportation, Innovation and Lean Operations, Medical Devices and Implants.

Speaking about this initiative, Shri Ravi Jain, Transport Commissioner, who is responsible for road safety in Rajasthan, said, “Rajasthan is one of the pilot States that will be implementing the Integrated Road Accident Database. We look forward to aligning our stakeholder Departments to work on a systems approach to road safety using the Transportation Safety Framework developed by the RBG Labs. This will help us streamline our initiatives in road safety and have a significant impact in achieving SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) goal of 50 per cent reduction by 2030 in the State.”