Indian government has made it mandatory that all new transport vehicles like trucks, buses, and mini buses have to install Speed Governors to limit their speed from January 31, 2017.
Speeding commercial vehicles on the highway are causing maximum accidents. The present government had announced its intention to bring down road accidents in the country by half, soon after coming to power in 2014.
Taking into consideration the increasing road accident rates, the United Nation put forth a 10-Year Action Plan, as an initiative to help countries bring down the number of road accidents.
The official goal of the ‘Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020’ is to stabilize and then reduce global road traffic fatalities around the world by the year 2020.
As far as India is concerned, one person is killed every 4 minutes in the road accident. The increasing road mishaps have also inflicted a huge economic loss to the country.
Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Transport and Highway, believes the economic loss from these accidents is nearly Rs 4 lakh crore each year, close to 3 percent of the GDP.
Safer roads and lesser accidents will make a good impact for both people and economy.
Despite the Government’s will, there was severe opposition to the implementation of road safety measures that would give tangible results.
“Ever since I have taken charge of the sector, the biggest regret that keeps haunting me is that despite best of our best intentions, Road Safety Bill is stuck. I feel pained and helpless to see 1.5 lakh Indians, mostly youth, dying on roads,” Union Transport Minister, Nitin Gadkari said in early 2016.
The increasing road accident rates in India had caught the attention of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who initiated steps to bring in the new ruling to make Speed Governors mandatory in commercial vehicles.
A change in Article 118 of the Motor Vehicles Act makes Speed Governor mandatory for all commercial vehicles.
This means that the existing vehicles will need to install these speed limit devices to get their fitness certificates from this date onwards, a move aimed at curbing the road accidents on Indian roads.
How Speed Governors Help
Speed Governors will limit commercial vehicles to a maximum speed of 80 kmph. The limit will be 60 kmph for school buses and trucks carrying hazardous material.
However ambulances, fire engines, police vehicles, and commercial vehicles with 9 seats or less (including driver) are exempted from this requirement.
Speed Governors also improve fuel efficiency, and reduces insurance premiums for heavy vehicles, as insurance rates are calculated on the basis of accident risks of driver.
The implementation of the deadline for Speed Governor installation was postponed multiple times due to claims from certain corners that there is a shortage of these devices in the market.
Talking on the new safety rule, Mohammed Ashraf, the MD, Speed Governor manufacturer Autograde, said, “There is no shortage for the devices in the Indian market. Speed Governors as a product is in the market for a while now. We have been manufacturing road safety solutions in India and the Middle East for almost a decade.
Ashraf said the company is also exporting more than 24 countries spanning across Europe, Africa and Latin America.
Dubai, which has one of the best road safety measures in the world, has adopted Speed Governors years ago. It is good to see that India is also moving to world class standards in road safety measures. We welcome the initiative this government is undertaking to ensure the safety of our fellow countrymen.