The only way to improve safety of our roads is to give much stricter punishments on driving offenses. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Road safety is major topic of concern in today’s society. Although I accept that punishing those who violate traffic laws severely is an important means of protecting road users, I contend that this is not the only way, as there are several other solutions to implement. Imposing stringent punishments on traffic lawbreakers is undoubtedly an effective method of guaranteeing road safety. This is because this may deter drivers from disobeying traffic regulations. If there are fewer drivers flouting traffic laws, the roads may become safer for all road users. This can be seen in the situation of Hanoi in early 2012, when a new fine for running the red light or overtaking without giving the left turn signal was introduced. As a result of this heavy fine, both the traffic accident and the traffic-related mortality rates in Hanoi fell considerably in that year. I would, however, claim that it is an exaggeration to state that the aforementioned policy is the only viable way of keeping drivers safe, and there are other resolutions to adopt. The first is constructing designated lanes for different types of vehicles, namely cars, motorbikes and bicycles. This measure is crucial in many cities in the world such as Jakarta and Bangkok, where most fatal traffic accidents happen when cars and motorbikes collide. The second is enhancing the safety standards of all vehicles on the road, which can be done by setting higher criteria for examining the safety of these vehicles before issuing number plates for them. Cars, for example, should be legally required to be equipped with at least four air bags and an anti-lock braking system. To conclude, while I agree that punishing driving offenders can help improve road safety, I am firmly of the opinion that there are many other ways of ensuring safety for drivers, including building dedicated lanes for different kinds of road vehicles and raising the safety standards of these vehicles. I recommend that all these measures should be adopted simultaneously in order that drivers can enjoy the safest driving experience.
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