The former president of Tata Sons – Cyrus Mistry, has died after being in a traffic accident. Mistry was traveling in his SUV and took the back seat with his friend Jahangir Bandol. However, reports assert that Cyrus Mistry was not wearing a seat belt, and applying it could have saved his life. Also, reports claim that it would have been thrown into the back seat of the front seat so quickly that the SUV would have lost momentum after hitting the clutch. Both Mistry and Bandol were unable to survive the accident, and avoiding seat belt use is said to be the cause of their deaths according to experts.
Although passenger failure to wear seat belts by passengers in the rear seats attracts a fine of Rs 1,000 under Rule 138 (3) of the Central Motor Vehicle Rules (CMVR), most people are either unaware of this mandatory rule or just ignore it. Even traffic police rarely fine passengers sitting in the back seats for not wearing seat belts.
What do the experts say?
International Road Federation Honorary President KK Kapila said the practice of wearing seat belts in the back seat is very low even in major cities and metros and close to zero in medium to smaller cities in India. According to the initial investigation, Mistry was not wearing a seat belt and had over speeded and an “error of judgment” on the part of the driver had caused the accident.
The government has taken measures to enhance car occupant safety and now intends to require automakers to provide at least six airbags in cars that can carry up to 8 passengers to enhance passenger safety from October this year. general.
An airbag is a vehicle occupant restraint system, which interferes between the driver and the vehicle’s dashboard during a collision, thus preventing serious injuries.
New standards for road safety
Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said in an interview with PTI last year that the government would introduce at least six airbags in cars that can carry up to 8 passengers, despite opposition from the auto industry. Gadkari had said assisting small cars, which are mostly bought by members of the lower middle class, should also have enough airbags and wondered why automakers only provide eight airbags in big cars bought by the wealthy.
“Mostly, lower-middle-class people buy small economy cars, and if their car does not have airbags and when accidents happen, it can lead to fatalities. Therefore, I appeal to all car manufacturers to provide at least six airbags across every makes and parts of the car.”
Earlier this year, to enhance the safety of car occupants, Gadkari said the government made it mandatory for automakers to provide three-point seat belts for all forward-facing occupants in a vehicle.
He added that the rule will also apply to the middle seat in the back row of the car. Since excessive speed remains one of the biggest killer diseases on Indian roads, the government has also imposed different speed limits for different classes of roads.
Currently, the speed limit notified by the Department of Road Transport is 100 km/h on national motorways and 120 km/h on motorways.
unsafe indian roads
According to the National Bureau of Crime Records data under ‘Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India – 2021’, the majority of road accidents (59.7 per cent) were due to speeding, accounting for 87,050 deaths and injuries to 2.28 people. It added that while more than 1.55 thousand lives were lost in road accidents across India in 2021, dangerous or reckless driving or overtaking contributed to 25.7 per cent of road accidents causing 42,853 deaths and injuries to 91,893 people.
National Road Safety Council member Kamal Soy said India has sufficient road safety standards to ensure road safety on the roads, the problem is the application of those standards. He added, “There is massive corruption in road construction, which leads to bad unsafe roads that lead to many accidents and deaths.”
With input from PTI