Traffic police impounded over 464 vehicles in the first week of the crackdown against underage driving.
Officials said that over 464 vehicles including 363 motorcycles, 46 cars, 46 rickshaws and 10 trucks were fined and their drivers were fined. “We have impounded the vehicles and dozens of parents have come to the police officials to protest,” said a traffic official. “Underage driving is so common that we need to impound vehicles and impose fines to make the point that it needs to be stopped,” said traffic official Muhammad Arif. “I have booked drivers as young as ten years old,” he said.
Traffic officials said that in the first week of the operation they had impounded 264 vehicles. “We now know that we will need to take much stricter measures because underage driving is far too common. In some cases, drivers who were of age didn’t have a licence,” they added.
Chief Traffic Officer (CTO) Sardar Muhammad Asif Khan told reporters on Friday that the campaign against underage drivers would continue in the district till the end of the year. “District traffic police have been directed to fine all violators and keep an eye out for underage drivers in every locality,” he said. “We also plan to distribute pamphlets regarding the risks of underage driving in high schools,” he said. The CTO asked the parents of the underage drivers to refrain from handing over their vehicles to unlicenced teenagers. “It isn’t just irresponsible but these parents seem to overlook that they are endangering the lives of other commuters,” he said. “They are the ones to blame for not refusing their children. If we arrest their boys and impound their cars that is a small price. They should be grateful that we have caught these kids before they crashed these cars,” he said. The CTO said that the traffic police would also check and arrest pillion riding during the Eid holidays. “One wheeling is strictly forbidden and we will closely monitor it during Eid,” he added.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 6th, 2011.