The Jakarta Post
The Transportation Ministry has attributed a notable decrease in the number of traffic accidents during the exodus season to travelers shifting to toll roads and the many free mudik (exodus) programs.
National data collected by the National Police Traffic Corps (Korlantas) between seven and three days prior to Idul Fitri, which falls on June 5, show that the number of traffic accidents fell between 40 and 70 percent over the same period last year.
Fatalities caused by accidents also decreased by between 28 and 45 percent during the period.
On May 2, the number of accidents declined by 54 percent from 138 accidents last year to 64 accidents. Fatalities declined by 45 percent from 29 victims to 16.
"Travelers are shifting to toll roads, which are relatively more controlled with the one-way traffic applied and speed limit set, preventing travelers from getting into accidents," Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi told reporters in Jakarta on Monday.
The ministry noted that the new trans-Java toll road had contributed to a 70 percent decrease in traffic at its eight observation points, namely Merak, Balonggandu, Rancaekek, Sadang in West Java and Prupuk, Pejagan, Tegal and Kendal in Central Java.
Aside from the new toll road, the ministry also attributed the decline to the many free mudik trips offered by state institutions, local administrations, state-owned enterprises as well as private companies.
The ministry has allocated 1,500 buses for such free trips bound for various cities on Java and Sumatra, among other transportation means.
"Traffic accidents usually involve motorcycle riders, which is why they're the main target of our free mudik trip program," the ministry's director for road transportation, Sigit Irfansyah, said. (ars)