‘#stopsmokyvehicles’ campaign by RTO, APDF

‘#stopsmokyvehicles’ campaign by RTO, APDF

A Pulmonary Function Test being carried out on a flower vendor in Mangaluru.

The Regional Transport Office, Mangaluru, in association with city-based APD Foundation has launched a new campaign, #Stopsmokyvehicles’, to put a cap on smoke emitting and polluting vehicles in its jurisdiction.

The programme will continue for one month and cover entire Mangaluru city and include Mulki, Moodbidri and other peripheral areas. Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) will also collaborate with RTO Mangaluru in this campaign.

“The objective of #Stopsmokyvehicle campaign is to highlight the importance of maintaining vehicles in a good and non-polluting condition and to stop unmaintained and smoke emitting vehicles from plying on the road polluting the environment and damaging human health. It also aims to provide a platform to showcase that the citizens of Mangaluru do care about its people and the environment,” said John Misquith, Regional Transport Officer, Mangaluru.

“As part of this campaign, RTO Mangaluru in association with KSPCB will be undertaking spot inspection of vehicles to check pollution levels. Charge sheets will be filed on the owners of polluting vehicles and we will also be imposing fines on the offending parties. Hence, the public is informed to keep their vehicles in a good condition and cooperate,” he added.

Aspects of campaign

APD Foundation will conceptualise, plan, co-ordinate and execute awareness and research-oriented aspects of the campaign. This includes conducting continuous educational video sessions at the RTO Office for the benefit of the citizens visiting the office to highlight the impact of air pollution and motivate them to maintain their vehicles in good condition, Misquith said.

Street plays and road shows will be enacted at various public venues around the city, he added.

APD Foundation, under its ‘Shuddha Gaali’ programme, will undertake health impact assessment of air pollution on outdoor workers like street vendors and road side shopkeepers.

Pulmonary Function Test (PFT) will be done on this target group using portable PFT machines.  Data will be collected  from an estimated sample size of about 400 citizens who work alongside roads having dense traffic. This data will be further analysed by a team of trained pulmonologists and the report will be released by RTO Mangaluru during a function in the first week of December.

According to a study undertaken on air pollution in Mangaluru by APDF, every Manglurean produces an average of 787.85 Kg Carbon Dioxide per year.

Most polluted

The study has shown that Baikampady, Lalbagh, PVS, Attavar, Bejai, Bunder, Central Market and Bunts Hostel areas have the highest pollutant contents in the air in Mangaluru and 19% of the rickshaw drivers in Mangaluru suffer from lung problems.

“Smoke emitting vehicles have been our target right from the beginning. In fact, the Anti Pollution Drive Foundation began its journey with a Facebook campaign called ‘Stop Smoky Vehicles’.

Hence, we are delighted that RTO Mangaluru and other government departments have recognised our expertise and involved us to contribute in the drive against vehicular pollution,” said Abdullah A Rehman, Founder-Chief of APDF.