They are speed breakers with a third dimension but not in physical form. Motorists experience the optical illusion of a speed barrier on the road, and tend to slow down, improving road safety at accident-prone spots.
That is the Indian government’s logic in opting for 3D paintings to be put up on roads, to act as virtual speed breakers.
“We are trying out 3D paintings used as virtual speed breakers to avoid unnecessary requirements of speed breakers,” Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said.
“We will test the three-dimensional painting of speed bumps out in a couple of highways. If it doesn’t cause any problem of road safety, we can experiment with it further,” National Highways Authority of India Chairman Raghav Chandra said.
Around 150,000 people are killed in road accidents every year in the country.
The government aims to reduce fatalities by half by 2019.
“Virtual speed breakers are likely to result in reduction in vehicle speed without causing injuries to passengers and damage to the vehicle,” said Patanjali Dev Nayar, regional adviser for disability prevention and rehabilitation at the World Health Organisation.