Road safety boost: Assam to have automated testing stations in 4 districts

Guwahati: The Assam State Transport Corporation (ASTC) has signed an agreement with a private enterprise to set up four automated testing stations (ATS) in Tinsukia, Jorhat, Biswanath and North Salmara districts of the state.

According to the agreement, the automated testing stations will operate on the public-private partnership (PPP) mode and the Built, Own, Operate, and Transfer (BOOT) model.

The arrangement is a collaboration between Assam State Transport Corporation/transport department of the Assam government and M/s ITEUVE INDIA Pvt. Ltd, in consortium with M/s Applus+ ITEUVE TECHNOLOGY S.L.U, which is a stock-listed company based in Spain.

“This initiative is a first of its kind in India and is designed to usher in a safer and cleaner future for Assam. Further, this will help in reducing accidents and ensuring safer roads, monitoring and controlling vehicle pollution and providing a comprehensive database,” Assam transport minister Parimal Suklabaidya, who was present during the agreement signing ceremony, said.

At its core, this venture seeks to introduce automated, state-of-the-art vehicle fitness testing, thereby reducing accidents and ensuring safer roads through minimised manual interventions.

“In line with this objective, the primary focus of these ATS centres will be on enhancing road safety by meticulously evaluating the roadworthiness of vehicles based on a comprehensive set of safety parameters. Cutting-edge automated testing equipment will be employed, aligning seamlessly with international best practices. This advanced technology-driven approach is pivotal to elevating vehicle conditions and mitigating road traffic accidents attributed to vehicular malfunctions,” ASTC managing director Rahul Chandra Das said.

Furthermore, these ATS centres will play a significant role in managing environmental concerns related to vehicle emissions.

“They will diligently monitor and control vehicle pollution, thereby contributing to a cleaner and greener environment, as part of Assam’s commitment to eco-friendliness and sustainability,” Das said.

“Additionally, these ATS centres will establish a comprehensive database that will serve as a valuable resource for informed decisions. This database will not only aid in efficient vehicle scrapping initiatives and end-of-life vehicle management but also support critical schemes and initiatives. One such scheme is the development of vehicle scrapping facilities, promoting the responsible retirement of old vehicles and contributing to a cleaner and safer transportation ecosystem,” he said.

Notably, ASTC is currently undergoing a transformative phase, evolving from a conventional bus operator into an aggregator-based service provider.

“This agreement marks a paradigm shift, reflecting ASTC’s commitment to more sustainable and environmentally friendly operations. This transition signifies Assam’s dedication to creating safer roads and a greener future for its citizens, thus showcasing a positive impact on the transportation ecosystem,” the ASTC official said.

In terms of resource allocation, ASTC and the transport department, Assam government is contributing land for these ATS centres, while private firms are funding construction, equipment and operations.

This strategic allocation of resources ensures long-term benefits and ownership, enhancing sustainability and accountability.

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“The endeavour to establish automated testing stations represents a significant step towards a safer, cleaner, and more sustainable transportation network. With a focus on road safety, environmental compliance, data-driven decision-making, cutting-edge technology, and ASTC’s commitment to transformation, this initiative will undoubtedly contribute to a brighter future for the region,” he said.

“The assurance of expert guidance and seamless service, with a commitment to maintaining a 95 percent uptime for uninterrupted vehicle testing, guarantees a superior experience for customers and stakeholders alike,” he added.

Also Read | Assam to get $200 million loan from global bank for climate resilience prep

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