With our country’s transition to cleaner emission norms and electric mobility, there are greater expectations from our automotive industry in this upcoming decade. Eyeing the road condition and traffic in India, The government desires car manufacturers to embrace basic safety features on their products as per global safety standards. Considering high accidents and fatalities statistics in the world, certain safety norms have been rolled out in vehicles that have to be strictly adhered to from this year.

These norms are not only necessary for safeguarding occupants but also the pedestrians. Gone are the days, when carmakers thought of putting safety checks in the back burner to reduce cost. The government’s initiative is forcing manufacturers to adopt safer vehicles from October 2020. Now buyers also have started emphasizing on safety factors over budget and fuel efficiency.

This transformation towards safety started in 2016 by the MoRTH through a 4-year timeline (2016-2020) where pedestrian safety norms are made appropriate for vehicles since October 2018 and will be applicable to all car models from this year.

1. Considering the application of norm, all the new cars from October 1, 2019, are entrusted with mandatory basic features like driver side airbag, ABS, reverse parking sensors, speed warning system to shield passenger’s safety and seat belt reminder and they will be applicable to all cars now. Cars with central locking are expected to have a manual override and child locks are to be implemented in all cars.

2. Software-based facilities like sensors installed at vehicle’s front to perceive an impact are a must now for pedestrian safety. It will facilitate sending of information to its control unit, enabling bonnet to lift up a few cms creating an air gap between hood and engine, thus reducing damage by blotting the impact. It is essential as per the safety norms for the bonnet to be redesigned to curtail the impact. These were applicable to all new cars from 2018, now they will be implemented on all cars.

3. Norms regarding the protection of the driver from steering intervention (speed of impact -50 km/h) and protection of driver and occupant from frontal collision (speed of impact – 56 km/h) are applicable to new car models from October 1, 2017. Also, the protection of passengers in case of lateral collision (speed of impact – 50 km/h) is for all new cars from the same year. The govt has ordered these to be stringently implemented from 2020 on all car models.

4. Norms regarding the protection of pedestrians from the collision are applicable on all new cars from 1 October 2018 and are to be strictly followed from 2020 on all cars.

5. Considering safety as a major factor for the driver, passenger, and pedestrian, the Government is thinking of providing ESC and AEB as standard on all models from 2022-23.

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