Eight-seater cars must have minimum of 6 airbags: Nitin Gadkari

Speaking at the "Intel India's Safety Pioneers Conference 2022," Gadkari claimed that five lakh incidents result in an estimated 1.5 lakh fatalities each year.
Nitin Gadkari
Nitin GadkariFile

CHENNAI: According to Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, the government would mandate that automakers install a minimum of six airbags in cars that can hold up to eight passengers for increased occupant safety.

Speaking at the "Intel India's Safety Pioneers Conference 2022," Gadkari claimed that five lakh incidents result in an estimated 1.5 lakh fatalities each year.

"We've made the decision to make it necessary for automobiles to have a minimum of six airbags. We want to preserve people's lives," the Minister of Highways and Road Transportation remarked.

In January, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) announced that it had been determined to improve safety features by revising the Central Motor Vehicles Rules (CMVR), 1989, in order to increase the safety of motor vehicle occupants against lateral collision.

"A draft notification has been issued on January 14, 2022, which mandates that vehicles of category M1, manufactured after October 1, 2022, shall be fitted with two side/side torso airbags, one each for the persons occupying front row outboard seating positions, and two side curtain/tube air bags, one each for the persons occupying outboard seating positions," it had said.

A vehicle's airbag is an occupant restraint system that intervenes between the driver and the dashboard during an accident to shield the driver from severe injury.

He added: "We need cooperation from all stakeholders (including the automobile industry).” His comments come as the auto sector has expressed alarm over how pricey taxes and higher safety and emission standards have made their products.

Gadkari emphasised that India carries all major vehicle manufacturers. He acknowledged that the Motor Vehicles Act is difficult to administer but noted the importance of safe roadways. By 2024, Indian road infrastructure will match that of the United States, the minister reaffirmed.

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