Dedicated ambulance lanes make way for better Covid management

City Covid-19 Delhi Health

The dedicated lanes for ambulances have helped emergency services tremendously say the Delhi traffic police. 

Delhi: Dedicated ambulance lanes set up in 15 districts in the capital aided the unrestricted movement of ambulances, vehicles carrying oxygen cylinders, and other emergency services, according to officials. 

“In a city like Delhi, where traffic is a usual problem, these lanes are of great significance. Especially in these trying times, when ambulances have to operate constantly and much more than usual, these lanes ease the situation,” said Satyavan Gowtam, DCP- Delhi traffic police.

“However, the traffic these days isn’t as severe due to the lockdown imposed lately. We expect a lot more convenience due to these lanes post lockdown or with lifted restrictions,” he added.

Areeb Ansari, a resident of Delhi said, “We did not know about these lanes until recently when a close Covid19 infected acquaintance got critical and had to be admitted urgently in hospital.” 

“Surprisingly, the journey to the hospital was unhindered,” he added.

The lanes have been created near hospitals like Lok Nayak Jay Prakash Narayan (LNJP) hospital, All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS), and Safdarjung Hospital. 

Jasbeer Singh, an ambulance service executive said, “emergency services’ lanes had been dedicated during Commonwealth games, it is obvious to set them up during this time of crisis. They make the movement a lot easier.”

On April 30, Delhi Police Commissioner S.N. Shrivastava took to twitter when he tweeted about the implementation of dedicated lanes for facilitating unrestricted movement of ambulances in Delhi. 

“Delhi Police stations are directed to dedicate a lane on the extreme left of the road for an ambulance and emergency vehicles, including oxygen tankers and cylinders (in an emergency). This is done to facilitate them while lockdown violators are prosecuted on regular lanes,” his tweet said.

Ghaziabad traffic SP Ramanand said, “We are also trying to ease the movement of emergency vehicles citing the situation. We use the VIP lanes for unrestricted movement of ambulances, and have set up barricades for dedicated lanes at a couple of roads too.”

“However,” he added, “it is not entirely possible to implement this in Ghaziabad. The roads aren’t that wide everywhere.”

The Delhi High Court, on March 19, 2021, asked the respective authorities to consider a petition requesting 24*7 dedicated emergency lanes for emergency services to ensure the earliest support to people. The plea also highlighted a report saying Delhi has 56 per cent traffic congestion and 190 hours are lost in traffic congestion. 

The petitioner, Vinay Kumar said, “Being a resident of Delhi, huge traffic congestion has become a part and parcel of my daily commute. Emergency vehicles driving zigzag in traffic jams had become a common sight. A patient got stuck between life and death on Delhi roads, which prompted me to find solutions to this plight.”

“To curb the menace, I along with my senior filed a PIL before Delhi High Court seeking the court’s intervention to direct the Government of Delhi to demarcate dedicated unrestricted lanes for emergency vehicular movement round the clock,” he added.

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