Saturday, 26 December 2009

सफेटी हेल्मेट्स फॉर तवो व्हीलर द्रिवेर्स


There's a law in Goa stipulating that when someone drives a scooter or a motorbike on Highway 17 they must wear a safety helmet. Their passenger(s), regardless of how many, need not; in fact the wearing helmets is nothing at all to do with safety.

Failure to wear a helmet when driving a two wheeler attracts a fine if caught. The chances of being caught are quite high because the police have a canny knack of hiding behind trees and just walking out onto the highway in front of helmet-less riders. The amount of the fine depends on how wealthy (or poor) the offender looks, how green the offender appears, and what time of the month it is; the last week before police paydays usually attract a heavy presence of their officers on the highway.

The locals are quite an innovative community who rather than spend a rupee if they don't have to will make-do-and-mend, and it's not unusual to see home made substitues for helmets. My favourite example was seeing a guy overtake my car one day with half a football on his head :)