Every Old & New Car Should Have Two Airbags In Front: Will Cars Become Expensive? (Explained)
Airbag on the passenger seat has been made mandatory for all 4-wheelers.
Vehicles manufactured on and post April 1 for new models and Aug 31, 2021 for older ones fall under the ambit.
Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways made the safety feature compulsory in light of Supreme Court recommendations on road safety.
Not only the driver but the co- passenger will no longer be left out of having an airbag in the prospects of a crash or accident.
While airbags have been mandatory for the driver seat from July 2019, now dual airbags for both the front seats will also have to be fitted.
From the upcoming financial year all cars falling in the M1 category- having no more than 8 seats- will have to come with dual airbags already fitted in and not retroactively.
Currently Maruti Suzuki Alto, S-Presso, and Wagon-R; Hyundai Santro; Datsun redi-GO; and Mahindra Bolero among several others have only a single airbag. Hence following the mandate these will have to be turned in to be fitted with the second airbag. Aug 31, 2021 is the deadline.
Road Safety Track Record
India contributes 10% of worldwide road accident victims according to a World Bank report. On an average 415 people lose their lives in automotive accidents daily.
Even though some measures are already in place like seatbelt alert sounds to remind the driver to wear a seatbelt, airbags are a much surer option in case of severe accidents.
Is It Worth It?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the US reports that 44,869 lives are saved by airbags.
Driver fatalities are avoided by 29% and of co-passengers by 32%.
When coupled with seatbelts, airbags are a force to reckon with, reducing chance of fatalities from crashes by 61%, of which 34% is attributed to just the airbags
Hence dual airbags are the need of the hour and cannot be compromised when it comes to safety of the co-passenger as well.
The airbag provides a cushion for the head and chest to slam into instead of the hard surface of the windshield in case of a collision impact.
Impact on Consumers
Airbags will not come for free since one can be expected to shell out Rs 5,000-8,000 , but this is one investment that will never cause regret.
While the seatbelt is safe enough for mild bumps, in more severe circumstances the presence of an airbag could be the difference between life and death.
More Safety Features
Electronic stability control, autonomous emergency braking and others are being considered by the government to introduce in vehicles from the factory model itself in 2022-23.
Anti-Lock Braking System
To prevent the vehicle from skidding and facilitating shorter stopping distances in the event of a panic/emergency braking motion
Speed Alert System
To send out continuous alerts when the sensor picks up on speeds of over 80kmph, and it cannot be shut off.
Reverse Parking Sensors
To alert the driver of obstacles behind the car when the reverse gear is activated
Manual Override for Central Locking System
To help passengers get out faster, manual command will enable doors to be opened by the individual instead of relying on the driver’s central lock control.