The inaugural session commenced at 6.00 p.m yesterday at the Mahawatta junction in Narahenpita, covering the police divisions in Panadura, Kalutara, Gampaha and Kelaniya.
Among the distinguished attendees were SP Indika Hapugoda, Traffic Administration Commissioner-General and Road Safety Director, and over eighty police officers and twenty-five DMT vehicle inspectors.
“This is the only time the programme will take the nature of raising awareness as it will become a traffic law in the near future. If vehicle owners do not follow repair orders, those instructions will turn into a prohibition order after the lapse of 10 days, following which the vehicle cannot be roadworthy unless granted necessary permission by a DMT vehicle inspector," the commissioner said.
He said the comprehensive programme would be held countrywide on a selected day. However, during the operation, a prohibition order was issued on a government lorry identified as unroadworthy.
During the awareness programme, traffic police officers and DMT commissioners inspected the suitability of vehicles to run on roads such as fixing a number of flickering lights with various colours other than the standard lights, hand brake conditions, signals and headlights, vehicles with musical horns, fixing stainless steel bars inside and outside vehicles which can cause heavy injury to passengers, attaching extra spare-parts, painting vehicles with luminous colours, fixing noisy silencers or changing the original silencer outlet, vehicle body conditions, vehicles that are not suitable to run on roads as they were not being serviced on time, changing vehicle class, wheelbase length, width, weight, number of seats and using fake number plates.
Most of the vehicles have been modified but not according to safety standards after registration. The raids were conducted in the following police divisions covering the western province:
In front of Shangri-La Hotel; Fort; Duplication Road; Bullers’ junction in Bambalapitiya; Bellanthara junction in Dehiwala; Golumadama junction in Mount Lavinia; Kurusa junction; Moratuwa; Pepiliyana; Kohuwala - Miriswatte junction, Piliyandala - Jubilee post junction' Mirihana - Navinna' Maharagama - Mahawatte junction; Narahenpita - Punchi Borella junction; Borella - Orugodawatte junction, Grandpass - Kolonnawa Rajamaha Viharaya, Wellampitiya - Ambatale junction, Mulleriyawa - Kotahena - Oliyamulla, Peliyagoda -Navy Camp Filling Station, Mahabage - Tyre Corporation junction, Peliyagoda - Bandarawatte, Kadawatha - Panchikawatte junction; Maradana; Panadura; Kalutara and Gampaha.
Addressing the media, SP Indika Hapugoda said the objective of the awareness programme was to ease traffic snarls and remove unsafety conditions.