Minimum 6 Airbags To Be Made Mandatory In Vehicles That Can Carry Up To 8 Passengers

New Delhi: The Central government has approved a draft notification making it mandatory for automobile manufacturers to provide a minimum of six airbags in motor vehicles that can carry up to eight passengers, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Friday. In a series of tweets, Gadkari, who is Minister for Road Transport and Highways, said the move will ultimately ensure the safety of passengers across all segments, irrespective of the cost and variant of the vehicle.Also Read – How Fuel Prices Can Be Slashed Further? Nitin Gadkari Suggests This Idea, Says ‘Petrol, Diesel Taxes Can Go Down If…’

Gadkari informed the Ministry of Road Transport and Highway had already mandated the implementation of the fitment of the driver airbag with effect from July 1, 2019, and front co-passenger airbag with effect from January 1, 2022. Also Read – Delhi-Mumbai Expressway to Fetch Rs 1,000 to 1,500 Crore Revenues Every Month: Nitin Gadkari

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The Minister said to minimise the impact of frontal and lateral collisions on the occupants seated in both front and rear compartments, the Centre has been decided that four additional airbags will be mandated in the M1 vehicle category (passenger vehciles comprising not more than eight seats in addition to the driver’s seat). Of the four additional airbags, two will be side/side torso airbags and two will be side curtain/tube airbags covering all outboard passengers.

According to latest government data, total 1,16,496 road accidents occurred on national highways (NHs), including expressways, in 2020, causing 47,984 deaths.

Last year, Gadkari in an interview to PTI had said small cars, mostly purchased by lower middle-class people, should also have an adequate number of airbags and had wondered why automakers are providing eight airbags only in big cars bought by rich people.

His remarks had come against the backdrop of the automobile industry raising concerns that high taxation and stricter safety and emission norms for vehicles have made their products expensive. Mostly, lower middle-class people buy small economy cars and “if their car won’t have airbags and when accidents happen, then it may result in deaths. So, I appeal to all car manufacturers to provide a minimum of six airbags across all variants and segments of the vehicle,” he had said.

The minister had acknowledged that additional airbags in small cars will increase their cost by at least Rs 3,000-4,000.

(With Inputs from PTI)

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