In a bid to make the country’s notoriously accident prone roads and highways a great deal safer, the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has made Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) mandatory in all commercial vehicles. All the upcoming and new vehicles will have to be equipped with ABS from April 2015, as per Government of India’s new ruling.
ABS helps control vehicles during emergency braking at high speeds by unlocking the wheels and allowing traction control by electronic distribution of pressure to wheels. This prevents the vehicle from skidding. Indian commercial vehicle makers will get a further six months to equip their respective new vehicles of existing models with ABS.
In 2012, as many as 1.42 lakh people were killed in about five lakh accidents, accounting for one death on the road in about every four minutes. Trucks, buses and multi-axle tractor trailers were involved in more than 30 per cent of the reported accidents. Furthermore, 77 per cent of the accidents were caused due to collision, loss of control and lane departure.
When it comes to ABS feature in passenger cars, most automakers are already offering the safety tech as an optional or standard feature, even though the government has not made it mandatory.
In the last decade, the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways had made seat-belts mandatory in all passenger and commercial vehicles and is reportedly, also considering making other safety features such as airbags, traction control and heads-up display mandatory in the future.