The grim reaper has been busy taking lives on Goan roads. However, Goa’s guardian angels have been working tirelessly to reduce the number of fatalities in the State.
One such guardian angel is Dy.S.P. (Security) Edwin M.S. Colaco, who began ‘Have a safe day’. This unique road safety initiative was conceptualized and executed by him in 2016. It started while he was posted as the police inspector of the Traffic Cell in Curchorem, and continued throughout 2016.
‘Have a safe day’ was first held in January 2016. It was supported by the Sanguem branch of HDFC bank.
Through the initiative, the Dy.S.P. has been pro-actively addressing a number of issues that affect the safety of road users. A slew of programmes are being organised to increase road safety awareness under the ‘Have a safe day’ banner.
To ensure safety of all road users, programmes like ‘Wear a helmet, save a life’, ‘In sight’, ‘The roving eye’, ‘Nirmal monar xisticho chonvor’ (discipline blooms in clean minds), ‘Beyond call of duty’ and others are organised.
“I have initiated these unique road safety campaigns with the sole intention of keeping all road users safe on the road, at any given time,” says Dy.S.P. Edwin Colaco.
How does the initiative work on Goan roads?
Whenever a person is seen riding on Goan roads without a helmet, the person is stopped but not fined. Instead the rider is offered a helmet. Personal details and at least one original document of the rider/vehicle are retained by the police officer.
The rider then has 24 hours to return the helmet to the traffic police office. If not, a challan is dispatched to the rider’s residence.
“While returning the helmet, we make sure that the rider carries his/her own helmet. This is done to ensure that he/she does not ride back without safety gear,” says Dy.S.P. Edwin Colaco.
“We also appreciate the two wheeler riders who diligently wear helmets. During our enforcement, we give them a ‘Thank you for wearing a helmet’ card,” adds the Dy.S.P.