Moving Towards Safety: Will The New Safety Norms Further Increase The Problems of The Indian Automobile Industry?

Publish On: 10 Jul, 2019 12:15 PM | Updated   |   SJ Desk  

ndian automobiles are made to face new changes in the safety regulations in the industry every year in the month of April. Recently, the Indian Government and automotive industry bought upon a whole new level of strictness and requires vehicle manufacturers to oblige with the crucial safety standards to prevent the most dangerous and deadly car accidents.

In India, 17 people perish in car accidents per hour. In 2018, India was reported to have over 400 deaths per day due to car accidents, and the yearly rate is calculated to be 15000 people. This rates Indian roads as one of the riskiest roads in the world. According to WHO research, 23 out of 100000 people in India end up dying in a car accident.

The new regulations were passed along with the Safer Cars for India program has caused a surge in the national demand for improved safety features in the cars. Consumers are demanding enhanced safety parts such as airbags to be installed into all the vehicles being manufactured. Below, we will break down the safety products that consumers are demanding in the present.

From April 2019, most bikes and two-wheeler vehicles are required to have Anti-Lock Braking Mechanisms that prevent the vehicle from being locked, even if the rider steps on the brakes hard. This is solely a requirement for vehicles with an engine movement of above 125cc. For the vehicles below 125cc, they are required to have Combi-Braking Systems, which allows riders to brake simply by pulling one lever. This regulation was initially a requirement for two-wheel vehicles manufactured after April 2018. As of now, the requirement was extended to all two-wheeled vehicles in the Industry. Most companies manufacturing two-wheelers in the market, such as Bosch and Endurance have begun to show compliance with the regulations by adding the ABS and CBS systems into their vehicles. The regulation also applies to cars introduced after April 2018 and is applicable to all existing models.

Furthermore, the new car models coming into the market after July 2019, are required to install airbags on the side of the driver. More safety features include safety alarm, seatbelt reminders and tail parking sensors. It is acknowledged by most consumers that airbags combined with the other safety features such as alarms and seatbelt reminders play an important role in preventing the occurrence of life-threatening and potentially deadly accidents.

Crash tests conducted in the past reveal that installation of airbags leads to a fall in the damage sustained from a collision from the anterior. While the majority of car models now come with driver-side airbags, dual airbags are available in the first-class car models in the country.

Seatbelts are other safety precautions are not taken serious enough by most drivers. They, too, prevent damages from frontal or back collisions by preventing extreme jerks, caused by collisions. The audio alarms will now go off once the sensors detect a driver or co-driver on the seat. They will keep repeating until both drivers and co-drivers put on the seatbelts.

Another unique safety feature is the speed warning. Every time a car is driven above 80kph, the alarm will go off that will keep beeping until the speed is adjusted. The advantage of this alarm is that there is no way for the passengers to turn off this alarm, and the main intent of this system is to discourage excessive speeding, which is the leading cause of road crashes.

The rear parking sensors are installed to detect the proximity of a vehicle with another object. These sensors start beeping when there is an object obstructing the track of the car. In some premium cars, there are both auditory and visual sensors installed, which provide rear-view that a driver would not be able to see through rear-view mirrors. These sensors are specifically beneficial for children, who are commonly placed in the back seats. They also reduce the chances of colliding with potentially harmful objects and help to keep a safe distance.

A newer regulation is for the central door locking, which is to be done manually. Child locks can be threatening to passengers, as during a life-threatening or unsafe situation, the passengers are trapped inside the vehicle. Moreover, the doors can only be unlocked from the outside, resulting in helplessness amongst the travelers.

The demands for automobiles have fallen within the last year, causing a downward movement in total sales. With the added safety features, the companies now have to increase their costs to comply with the regulations.