Road to Death

Road to Death


At least ten people were killed in eight road accidents within the new year season. Police Media Spokesman DIG Nihal Thalduwa said,
“Four people were killed in two accidents in Pussellawa and Hali-Ela, while six individuals were killed in six separate accidents in Mahiyangana, Kirindiwela, Ambalantota, Pugoda, Matara, and Thanamalwila.”


“Five of the eight road accidents were due to vehicles skidding off the roads,” said Thalduwa. Data shows that every year 38,000 crashes cause 3,000 deaths and 8,000 injuries. 598 lives per year are taken by road accidents, affecting disability from road crash injuries per 100,000 people. The most common types of vehicles involved in accidents include motorcycles, lorries, dual-purpose vehicles, private buses, three-wheelers, SLTB buses, motor cars, and cycles. Road crash fatalities and injuries could cost countries like Sri Lanka between 3-5% of their GDP annually. An additional $2 billion investment is needed to combat the road safety crisis.

“Why are roads dangerous?” Here are some comments received by Lanka News Line probe.

Athula Kariyawasam (Road Development Authority – Consultant): “Many roads lack proper infrastructure, including inadequate signage, poorly designed intersections, and insufficient pedestrian crossings.”


Asela Vidarshana (Social Activist): “It’s common knowledge that you can get away with any traffic offence with a bribe. Inconsistent enforcement of traffic regulations contributes to reckless driving, speeding, and other violations. Body cameras need to be fixed for all traffic police officers.”

Deeptha Sanjeewa (Driving Instructor): “Lack of awareness about safe driving practices and road rules is a key issue. There needs to be a systemic driving test as in the UK. Also, roadworthiness of vehicles needs to be tested annually. Defensive driving, adherence to speed limits, and responsible behavior need to be emphasized.”

Salani Kulasekara (Housewife): “The Police need to visit schools to conduct road safety shows to educate children on road safety. These shows need to commence. Public awareness campaigns to educate drivers, pedestrians, and schoolchildren about road safety need to be launched.”

Samanthi Daswani (Driving Instructor): “Pedestrians face risks due to inadequate sidewalks, unsafe crossings, and lack of awareness. Improve pedestrian infrastructure, including sidewalks, zebra crossings, and footbridges. Educate pedestrians about safe crossing practices.”

Related Articles