Draft Notification on Six mandatory Airbags

Union government has started the process of making six airbags mandatory from October 1, 2022. Airbags will be made mandatory for all cars being sold in India.

Highlights

  • Government issued a draft notification and asked for public comments and stakeholders’ comments on the proposed rule.
  • This notification is a follow-up to appeal made by Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari on August 3, 2021, to car manufacturers for providing 2 airbags across all variants of vehicles, one for the driver and other for co-passenger in front seat.
  • Rule for airbags for driver’s seat was made mandatory from July 1, 2019. Rule for one airbag for co-passenger came into effect from January 1, 2022.

GSR notification

Though, many Indian cars have six airbags in their top variants already. Now, government have approved a draft GSR notification for making minimum of 6 airbags compulsory. This decision was taken for minimising the impact of frontal and lateral collisions to the occupants seated in front as well as rear compartments.  4 additional airbags be mandated in M1 vehicle category.

M1 vehicle category refers

M1 vehicle category refers to passenger cars having a maximum of eight seats in addition to driver’s seat. It includes sedans, hatchbacks, MUVs and SUVs.

What is an airbag?

Airbag is a vehicle occupant-restraint system using a bag. It is designed to quickly inflate and deflate during a collision. It comprises of airbag cushion, an inflation module, a flexible fabric bag, and an impact sensor. Airbags are fitted in cars for providing the vehicle occupant with a soft cushioning and restraint during a collision. It can help in reduce injuries between flailing occupant and interior of the vehicle. It provides an energy-absorbing surface between occupants and steering wheel, body pillar, headliner, instrument panel and windshield.

Number of airbags in vehicles

Modern vehicles comprise up to 10 airbag modules in various configurations, including: driver, passenger, seat-mounted, side-curtain, door-mounted, knee bolster, inflatable seat belt, B & C-pillar mounted side-impact, and pedestrian airbag modules.

Road accidents in India

According to Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari, 23,483 pedestrians lost their lives in road crashes in 2020. As per NCRB data, 17,538 car occupants died in road crashes in 2020.

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