In 2000 when the Mumbai-Pune Expressway was thrown open to traffic, the six-lane highway cut travel time between the cities by two hours and lifted traffic off the old Mumbai-Pune highway. However, the 94.5km expressway did become one of the most accident-prone stretches in the country with the Maharashtra police recording about 214 accidents between 2012 and 2013.
As per the MoRTH survey report of 2015, 77% of the road accidents are caused due to driver’s fault (driver behaviour on roads while on drive). In a bid to make the country’s roads safer, the Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari had asked all major automobile makers to adopt stretches of highways for fixing black spots, setting up trauma centres and providing life-saving ambulance services.
Auto makers such as Mahindra & Mahindra, Toyota- Kirloskar, Mercedes-Benz, Maruti Suzuki Ltd, Tata Motors Ltd and others have recognized road safety as one of the priority areas in their CSR policy.
As a Corporate house, we are committed to safety, we have owned up our responsibility to contribute to enhancing road safety in India. Since 2005, we have been engaging in various Road Safety initiatives through our deep-rooted safety mission of ensuring ‘Safest Cars with Safest Drivers’. Through our holistic safety awareness campaign, we urge every citizen to become safety brand ambassadors, by changing the prevailing mindset. In the area of traffic safety, we are addressing traffic safety through integration of people, cars, and the traffic environment with the aim of completely eliminating traffic casualties.
One of the Road Safety Initiatives, Toyota Safety Education Program aims to educate school children and teachers through phase wise training programs and participate in the Government initiatives to create awareness on traffic safety. The programs include step-by-step approach and interactive courses on traffic safety, a film, traffic safety games, and other friendly formats. Today, TSEP has educated 6, 80,000 school children from across the country.
– Naveen Soni
Toyota Driving School aims to ensure extreme importance on making every student a responsible and safe driver. The curriculum is a comprehensive driver training program that will boast of high quality and practical and futuristic training models like the driver simulator mechanism which is expected to deliver the ‘Etios Experience’.
The Safety Model School – Team Toyota Activity (TTA) focuses on educating and sensitizing school children, teachers, parents and school bus drivers on responsible safety habits and ensure a safer traffic environment for the next generation. The program is aimed at creating Safety Ambassadors in schools by creating Safety zone & Safety Park within school, implementing an interactive learning program – Toyota Safety Education Program, training of school vehicle drivers and creation of safety group in the school.
Annual Driver Training Programs & Health Check Ups are conducted at the Bangalore, Delhi and Hyderabad airports since 2014 with over 5000 drivers participating in the campaign till date. More than 900 drivers were diagnosed with vision problems during health checkups and provided free spectacles by TKM. Through this initiative, Toyota aims to encourage the drivers to adopt safer driving practices and educate them on the importance of physical wellbeing.
Along the Bangalore-Mysore Highway, we have installed safety signage, both in English and Kannada at different places for driver education such as ‘high speed driving, lane driving, not to use mobile phone while driving and caution for speed breakers ahead.
TKM organized a “Safety Seminar” in Guwahati as a part of the Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Friendship Motor Rally in 2015. The seminar addressed subjects like roadmap for accident investigation analysis & infrastructure, industry initiatives for vehicle safety improvements and the importance of safe driving, awareness and enforcement
Another unique drive has been Toyota Caravan” – a common platform for distinguished opinion leaders to share knowledge and spread awareness about safety and environment friendly technology through series of interactive sessions, in New Delhi and Jaipur in November 2016.
THUMS: Toyota has developed computerbased virtual human models (millennial crash test dummy), known as Thums, to analyze and simulate situations that are closer to the actual accident. Thums functions with organs, bones, ligaments, tendons, and muscle. It is computer animated with 80,000 cyber parts, including a heart – to pinpoint precisely which parts of the body are affected, and how, by various highimpact accidents. These are used at Toyota dealerships across the country to promote safety. Through THUMS, Safety messages such as Follow speed limits, Buckle-up seat belts, Avoid mobile phone use on drive including hands free calls, etc… Also, we reach out to children to build safety habits through Kids magazine with THUMS messages, etc..
Toyota is also actively engaged in promoting safety on its website “besafetyleaders.in” to send safety messages such as Buckle-up the seat belts for a safe drive, etc.
In addition to these, we have always given utmost importance to passenger safety. Etios was first in its segment to standardize Air bags in driver and passenger side. We went set a safety benchmark with by standardizing Anti-Lock Braking System with Electronic Brake-force Distribution across all Toyota models & in all grades.
We have also collaborated with our dealers and suppliers to initiate projects that address road safety concerns of India. Our campaigns are designed in a way that they not only educate on road safety sense but also have a strong focus on inculcating right safety attitude or behavior amongst the target groups.