PESHAWAR: At least two youngsters were killed and more than 400 people, mostly motorcyclists, suffered injuries in road accidents here on the Independence Day.
Most of the accidents were caused by rash motorcycle driving by youths.
“We recorded the death of two teenage boys on Aug 13 and 14 when our trauma room remained flooded with the victims of road accidents involving teenage bikers,” Dr Zahid Khan, an assistant professor at the Emergency Department of the Lady Reading Hospital, told Dawn.
Rash driving by youths caused most accidents
He said death toll could increase as many had serious injuries.
Dr Zahid said the injured people could suffer disabilities.
He blamed accidents on the parents, who allowed children to drive motorcycles.
However, some officials insisted that the city district and police administration were to blame as they looked the other way when teenagers whizzed around on motorcycles without silencers threatening lives and causing noise pollution.
“There seemed to be no law,” said a social media activist.
He said roads were blocked as the teenage motorcyclists did a wheelie blowing horns.
“Teenagers performed dangerous stunts without wearing helmets,” he said.
The social media activist said the district administration and police seemed to be on holiday on the Independence Day.
The province’s biggest health facility, LRH, admitted 160 victims of road accidents on Aug 13 and 14, while far more were discharged after being given first aid.
Zahid said most accident victims reached the neurosurgery ward due to head and spine injuries, orthopedic department due to fractures, and cardiothoracic department for chest injuries and that they were likely to undergo operation to prevent complications.
“Such unnecessary and avoidable cases not only cause problems for the injured but they also deprive the critically-ill people of proper attention of the staff members, who remained buzy with the injured,” he said.
Dr Zahid stressed the need for scaling up public awareness of ways to protect life of youths on festive occasions.
He said those with broken limbs and major fractures had to undergo long treatment.
Dr Zahid said the LRH, which is the only public sector hospital to have been recognised for postgraduate training of doctors on emergency and trauma by the College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan, got over 2,000 patients in 24 hours with improved treatment outcome but at times, it struggled to handle cases, which poured in.
“The sudden influx of patients adversely impact on the handling of emergency cases. There is no chance of error during their handling,” he said.
Dr Zahid said the people needed to find safer ways to celebrate festivals.
He asked parents to stop giving children motorcycles for driving to prevent threats to their and others life.
The Hayatabad Medical Complex and Khyber Teaching Hospital also received over 200 patients on Aug 13 and 14, mostly injured motorcyclists.
The doctors in emergency wards said they also handled indigestion and trauma cases due to overindulgence on Eid.
SP (traffic) Fazal Ahmed Jan said the police were deployed across the city to check underage and rash motorcycle driving.
“We cannot send police to every street. However, we made all possible arrangements to cope with the situation,” he said.
The SP said police had registered cases against many violators of traffic laws.
Published in Dawn, August 16th, 2019