In the early morning of July 23, three fatal traffic accidents simultaneously occurred on Highway 5 and a week later they were constantly talking about the inadequacies that need to be repaired right away of this road ... Half a year ago , this same road had an even more horrific accident, with 8 people killed, and the road's inadequacies were mentioned just like in the past week.

The most visible problem of National Highway 5 is that hundreds of perpendicular ways of life have been opened to connect the route with the people's crossroads. These perpendicular openings make it possible for drivers to detect vehicles entering the lane only at a distance where they have no choice but to choose any solution other than going straight or braking sharply. In the design of Road 5 there cannot be such open paths, in theory, all of those crossroads must be overpasses or underpasses for people. But to ensure that, Highway 5 will be the most special road in the world because of the overpass density.

Highway 5 was renovated and upgraded in 1996. At that time, this was the most modern road in Vietnam with the standard grade 1 road, which was planned to be part of the trans-Asia route. And of course traffic capacity by design is to ensure the infrastructure conditions of highway 1.

According to the standard of the plain grade 1 road, the safety corridor is prescribed to be 17 meters from the edge of the road. But so far all houses built within the road safety corridor of Road 5 have been licensed for construction. That makes 100 kilometers of this road the nuance of an inner city route.

It is impossible to build overpasses for hundreds of roads created by residential areas springing up by the irresponsibility of local authorities on either side of the road 5. The only thing that can bring safety to the road 5 In the current context, it is a change of road grade, taking it from a plain grade 1 national highway to urban road standards. That means lowering the speed of traffic from 90km / h to 50km / h, and placing speed humps on the whole route, installing traffic lights for hundreds of intersections.

Turning a hundred-kilometer highway into urban roads is unprecedented precedent, because that means the death of highway 5. But with the arrival of the Hanoi-Hai Phong highway, This is a perfect fit, apart from a single factor that is the BOT road. When erasing road 5 as a national highway, the Hanoi - Hai Phong expressway is the unconventional transport option, with vehicle traffic being the entire transport demand of the Hanoi - Hai Phong axis. Of course, what you need to do is to recalculate the rates, and the charging time.

Abolishing national highway 5 and completely replacing the Hanoi - Hai Phong highway on the basis of re-calculating vehicle traffic and BOT charges is the only way, and can be done immediately, to ensure safety for residents. live on this road of death. However, in the long run, what to ensure the Hanoi - Hai Phong highway does not turn into another road of death?

How long will it take for the classrooms to grow up on the safety corridors of the highways again? How long will it take to see the new urban areas and new residential roads on either side of the road? The answer depends entirely on the ability of the local authorities to manage and comply with the laws along the route. And this dependency is fundamentally fragile.

More than 10 years ago, when the Ho Chi Minh road to the southwest of Thanh Hoa, north Nghe An, was just asphalted, I was surprised to witness Tho Xuan people sobbing on motorcycles because they saw the asphalt for the first time. Less than 10 years after the opening of the Ho Chi Minh Highway, people do not recognize the desolate hills and mountains along this route. Houses and shops have sprung up close to both sides.

Right at the gate of Hanoi, the Hanoi - Bac Giang highway, with the southern end of Phu Dong Bridge has now become a spontaneous service center crowded like a rural market. From Phu Dong Bridge to Thanh Tri Bridge, people sell bread and fruit on emergency lanes like street pavements comfortably.

The life of the roads can only be maintained based on the ability of local governments to guarantee the law. But when neglecting people to go to the streets to do business, and to live as a benefit of the leaders of the local governments, all roads will be put to death.

Highway 5 is dying when people have no other way to ensure safety is to lower the traffic speed below the standard. And will the death of Road 5 be unique or not?

Pham Trung Tuyen