Safety systems like parking sensors, seatbelt reminders, speed alerts and airbags will be made mandatory in India from July 2019. Even entry level hatchbacks manufactured after this date should have these as standard equipment.
Another important feature all cars should have is a manual override mechanism for the central locking systems. This will prevent occupants from being trapped inside the vehicle in the event of an accident so that they can get out of the vehicle. The rule will also apply to light commercial vehicles which will be used in urban environments and they should have airbags and parking sensors.
The timeline for the implementation of these new rules has already been approved by the Union Ministry for Road and Transport. Generally, compact cars made in India did not have safety features like airbags and parking sensors as standard equipment. They were optional extras for which the customer had to pay extra. Only premium and luxury vehicles had these features as standard equipment.
Many models in India also do not have speed alerts and in view of the fact that many accidents are caused by speeding, making this a compulsory feature when the speed goes above 80 km/h would go a long way towards bringing down the accident rate. The system sounds an audio alert to the driver to remind them that they are speeding with the sound increasing in intensity as the speed of the vehicle increases. The parking sensors too will help drivers avoid any obstacles in their path when they reverse the car.
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