Chennai – OMR / My City – My Place

OMR – The Road And It’s Commuters:

The IT corridor which acts as a speed zone for the teens and at times plays a role of a water pool for swimmers and nonswimmers. Next to ECR, to drive on this OMR stretch would always be there on everyone’s mind especially when a person buys a bike/car.

OMR

Image Credit: Mohd. Sarfaraz

What’s not there at OMR?

Starting from restaurants to 5-star hotels, automobile showrooms and IT giants this stretch is always a focus zone for small scale and large scale entrepreneurs.

The most happening place for realtors irrespective of how this place looks when it rains heavily. This post is not about the goodies and baddies of this road instead it’s all about the road and it’s commuters.

If You Can Drive In India, You Can Do Drive Anywhere Without Fear:

It is not at all a new thing for me to hear from my friends, colleagues and sometimes unknown co-passengers from different regions saying this sentence.

A Person from Mumbai/Delhi says that if one knows how to drive in their cities, then they can drive or ride the vehicle in any part of the world. This is the same thing which I had heard from a person who hails from Hyderabad/Bangalore and other regions too. If I ask the reason behind what they say, I get a response like this.

With the traffic violations and lack of road sense among some people including the ones who are very well educated a normal commuter’s life has become horrible. So, people get adjusted to every ridiculous thing that happens on the road and sometimes does the same thing that is against traffic rules even after knowing that they are doing a wrong thing. Indians get accustomed to new things very faster. Not just within India but even at other countries, Indians learn to drive quickly because of this trait. I can agree with this answer to some extent.

Not just me. Many of you reading this post might be having the same impression and agree with me. But, if we go a bit deep and see the root of it, I think that this is not something for us to feel proud instead we should feel ashamed irrespective of the region where we are.

Is India Different?

I had been to two different countries. In both the places, the first preference is always given to the Pedestrians and School going kids on road in addition to an emergency vehicle. I strongly believe that is the same thing which we have got too on the rules book of India.

But, do we witness that on our roads often?

I can pick the very familiar Rajiv Gandhi IT Expy (aka) OMR as an example.

Don’t we push a pedestrian, a two-wheeler rider, a four-wheeler rider to a spot where they get scared to death?

Most of us do it knowingly and unknowingly.

– A Pedestrian gets scared because of the people who ride and drives an automobile.

– Two-wheeler riding person gets scared because of the four-wheeler (car) driver and vice-versa.

– A person who drives a car also gets scared because of the heavy vehicles on road.

A Daily Routine At The OMR:

OMR

Image Credit: Wikipedia

One of the busy roads during weekdays where there is no safety for the lives of a user as well as the vehicles. Strictly obeying traffic rules is one side, but the courtesy to fellow users that one needs to have while on road no longer exist here. Even if it exists that will be at the bare minimum percentage according to me.

The Kings/Queens Of OMR:

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

I am a user of this IT corridor since 2010.

Everything mentioned below is purely based on what I had seen and found to be bad. I am sure most of the other user’s of this road would also agree to it. The stretch where some people considers themselves as a Kings and Queens of the road.

Forget about the Madras Motor Race Track that is in Irungattukottai where you can have sights of a two-wheeler and a four-wheeler racing. If you would like to see the racing of heavy vehicles like government Buses and Trucks then OMR is the best spot for you to choose.

The Familiar Scenes At The IT Corridor:

Scene – 1: The Bus Drivers

The bus race that happens at OMR between the government bus drivers. I am not sure why do they do it.

OMR

Image Credit: Wikipedia

– It is very clear that their understanding of parallel parking is totally different. They stop the bus at the bus stop in parallel to another already standing bus leaving bare minimum space on the right lane.

– Even if there is a space where a two-wheeler or a four-wheeler rider can pass, some of the bus driving kings ensure that they close that gap so that the entering vehicle’s driver stop their vehicle to avoid getting crushed.

– These Kings are doing a great job in taking the passengers to their destination safely. At the same time, they showcase their driving skills not just on the roads but on the service lanes too.

My Views:

Dear, some of the Govt Bus Drivers & Corporate Bus Drivers – We know that you too get irritated because of hot weather and sitting for long in heavy traffic. But, it would be really awesome if you think about the safety of others who use the same road too.

Scene – 2: The Trucks / Lorry Drivers

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

We can say that they are the hidden Health Officials of OMR.

No doubt that they help us by collecting the sewage from our homes on regular basis. But, all their good efforts go in vain as the actions of some of them are really terrible especially on roads like OMR.

We may not see a large number of Trucks on this stretch but that is very well compensated by the sewage water collecting lorries and metro water supplying lorries.

With an unskilled cleaner who signals with their hands even when their vehicle is not gonna take any turns, we can witness the maximum speed of a lorry that too high volume of wastewater in it.

My Views:

Dear, some of the lorry drivers, please remember that you are driving a vehicle carrying heavy loads. Please do drive at the recommended speed. For heaven’s sake, teach the cleaner on when to give hand signals as they confuse the driver behind. Please try to find the difference between each color that glows in a signal pole.

Scene – 3: The Share Auto Drivers

OMR

Image Credit: The Hindu

The Masculine Snakes of OMR.

I think 90 percent of these autos which run on this stretch holds weakened brake shoes and pedals in it. The share auto driver’s (not all of them) liking towards the zebra crossing is stunning. I had hardly seen a share auto that stops on the correct and safe spot to pick and drop its passengers.

They always would either be on top of the Zebra crossing/stop line or before or after the crossing. Even when the signal turns green they will ensure that the vehicles standing behind don’t move until they fill their autos with passengers which really annoys.

I had addressed the share autos as snakes of OMR as it was mostly driven in a zigzag manner. The auto drivers hardly use indicator lights instead scare other users and their vehicles by just hopping into a different lane when least expected.

But, there is one thing to be noted here in all the above mentioned three scenes.

All these drivers are highly skilled. Though they are rash on road we can hardly see them making an accident. But for sure they scare the fellow riders of the road by cutting the lanes, stopping their vehicles all of a sudden without indicating. Some of these activities of the drivers give a bare minimum time frame for the other users of the road to react leading to unwanted gestures and verbals fly in the air.

My Views:

Dear, some of the share auto drivers, we understand that you have minimal scope to view what is behind you on road. When that is the case, please do not jump on to the road like a racing horse.

Scenes – 4 & 5: The Cars And Bike Users Of OMR

OMR

Image Credit: Pixabay

One can find most types of the cars and bikes on this stretch. Starting from old premier Padmini of Fiat to Ferrari and TVS XL super to Kawasaki Ninja’s & Harley Davison’s on this 20.1 Kilometer stretch starting from Madhya Kailash junction in Adyar to Siruseri.

Dear friends, let us admit. Most of us do not follow lane discipline in our own countries, but stick to the lanes and follow the rules of a different country when we are abroad.

Maybe because the punishment is very strong there where one could lose their Driver’s license validity if found guilty. We do have the same rule but we do not mind about it much as we can fly from the spot by handing over a hundred rupee note as a penalty/bribe to the traffic police officials. No speeding tickets here. You may be asked to stop for not wearing a helmet or a seatbelt. But, all that takes is a hundred rupee note to move on.

My Views: 

Dear two-wheeler rider, you will not understand the pain of driving a car until you start to drive your own car.

It is a bit difficult to drive a car in heavy traffic.

You will also see a scene where two-wheelers peeping into the small gap to pass your car even when there is no space. I can vouch for it as I had realized it as soon as I started driving my four-wheeler at Hyderabad.

Please do consider the amount of money a four-wheeler driving person had invested on his/her car. Owning a car is a Liability and not an Asset.

Most of the times, their car is on road because of the bank loan and not because of the full cash payment from their savings.

To see a hanging back/front bumper, broken side view mirrors, dents on the bonnet and side doors will induce great pain in the hearts of the car owners as well as the cab drivers who drive someone else’s vehicle for their living.

I am One Among You:

Saying all the above does not make me a Mr. Perfect. But, I still wanted to share this with everyone and also reiterate myself one thing. We need to ensure our safety as well as others while on road.

I do admit that I drive fast especially when the road is a bit empty. My own people had told me that accompanying me in my scooter/car is like going on a roller coaster.

So, most of us are alike. But, we can try to do smaller good things at least so that it becomes a habit.

For Everyone Including Myself:

  • Allow the pedestrians to pass.

– Maybe they are walking when they are not supposed to but still, please forgive them and allow them to pass.

OMR

Image Credit: TripAdvisor

  • Use the vehicle’s horn wisely.

– Maybe there is no one crossing the road in front but the signal is still in red. Please be patient and help the driver in front to be calm.

– They are also tempted just like you to accelerate but still trying to stick to the rules.

– You need not appreciate but allow them to stay with peace instead of honking.

  • Please stick to the lanes.

– If you need to switch the lanes, please turn on the indicators well ahead.

– Just because you had indicated does not mean that you can jump on to a different lane. By jumping, you are just gonna mess with the users who are already in that lane. Be Courteous.

  • Stop blaming the traffic police officials for taking a bribe.

Do not like them taking money from you? Then do not give them a chance.

– Wear Seatbelts always.
– Do not forget to wear a Helmet.
– Keep your insurance renewed and a copy of the documents handy.

Stay Motivated. Let us be the change that we wish to see in the world.