Road safety is extremely crucial because car accidents are one of the leading causes of death in the country. After the recent death of business tycoon Cyrus Mistry in a tragic car accident on the way to Mumbai, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways is considering making wearing seat belts mandatory for rear-seat passengers as well.
Nitin Gadkari, the Minister for Road Transport and Highways, stated that the government will issue a notification in the next three days outlining the penalties that will be imposed if a passenger fails to wear a seatbelt.” Previously, there was only a penalty for not wearing a seatbelt for the driver and co-passenger, but we have updated the law to include rear seat passengers as well,” he explained.
Importance of wearing a seatbelt
Seatbelts, like airbags, are important safety features that help to protect a driver or passenger in the event of an accident. Seatbelts can save your life in an accident and lower your risk of serious injury. Seat belts keep drivers and passengers from being thrown out of the car through the windows or doors. This is significant because being thrown from a vehicle increases your chances of death by a factor of five. Thousands of people who die in car accidents each year could have been saved if they had worn their seat belts. The irony is that everyone knows that seat belts save lives in car accidents, but people do not always buckle up their seat belts.
Seat Belt Rules in India
Everyone is aware that under Indian law, the driver and co-driver in the front seats are required to wear seat belts, and driving without a seat belt constitutes a traffic safety violation for which violators may be fined. But how many of you are aware that rear seat belts are also required? According to section 194(B)(1) of the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019, “whoever drives a motor vehicle without wearing a safety belt or carries passengers who are not wearing seat belts shall be punished with a fine of one thousand rupees.”
Besides that, following the statement of Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, we can predict that rear seat belt laws will be updated in the coming weeks.He stated, “I just signed the file today, and the order will be issued in 4-5 days. It is now on the concurrent list, and the state government is expected to act on it.My goal is to reduce 50% of accidents and 50% of deaths in the country by the end of 2024”.
Aside from that, the minister stated that a beeper will sound if a seatbelt is not worn in the rear seats, and that the move is already being discussed with various car manufacturers.This seat belt warning alarm is already necessary for all front seat passengers in all vehicles.The government has also asked Amazon to stop selling devices designed to disable car seatbelt alarms, according to transport minister Nitin Gadkari, citing potential safety risks.