Draft rules issued for mandatory rear seat belt alarms

Representative Image. File Photo

New Delhi: The Road Transport Ministry has issued draft rules to make it mandatory for car markers to install an alarm system for rear seat belts just like ones for seats in front.

In the requirements for safety features of passenger carrying vehicles, the rules seek to replace the norm for "driver and co-driver safety belt reminder" with "driver and all other front facing seat occupants safety belt reminder."

Public comments have been sought on the draft rules by October 5, according to the ministry's notification.

The government is looking to enforce the use of rear seat belts after former Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry died in a car crash recently. He was sitting in the rear seat and did not have his seat belt on, police had stated.

Traffic rules provide for all occupants in a car to wear a seat belt, failing which they can be fined. But passengers at the back seldom do and enforcement is lax.

The draft rule provides for car manufacturers installing a 'safety-belt reminder' or a system dedicated to alert the driver when the driver and /or all other front facing seat occupant(s) do not use the safety-belt. The system is constituted by detection of an unfastened safety-belt and by a driver's alert which is the first level warning, and a second level warning, it said.

"First level warning shall be at least a visual warning activated for 4 seconds or longer when the driver and/or front facing seat occupants' safety-belt is not fastened and the ignition switch is engaged," it added.

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