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Old 8th December 2015, 11:07   #1
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Default Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

In what can be considered as a strange move, Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) is proposing to mandate seat belts for L5M and L5N vehicle categories under a new draft number AIS-134/F.

Quote:
L5M Category: Passenger Carrier (auto-rickshaw) A three-wheeler on account of its technical features intended to carry passengers.

L5N Category: Goods Carrier A three wheeler on account of its technical features intended to carry goods.
Considering the fact that an Auto Rickshaw is a mostly open vehicle and pretty much a crudely put together vehicle, not sure if this is a good idea. In case of accidents involving autos, more often than not, the passengers get thrown out, which may be a better option considering the safety (or lack of safety) of the structure.


Source: Motorbeam

Mods, not sure where this info should go. Since it is neither a car news nor a commercial vehicle news. Please move as needed
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Old 8th December 2015, 11:27   #2
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Default re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

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Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
Considering the fact that an Auto Rickshaw is a mostly open vehicle and pretty much a crudely put together vehicle, not sure if this is a good idea.
Seatbelts rather become more important in such 'open' vehicles where chances of getting thrown out of the vehicle are increased multiple fold than a closed car. Of course the structural integrity of auto-rickshaws is nothing to talk about and they turn out deadly even after little bit of speedy impact but still the chances of injuries can be reduced to great extent by adding seatbelts during low speed crash tests.

Adding seatbelts and strictly enforcing rule of wearing them will also ensure that these auto-rickshaws are not overcrowded. The way these auto-rickshaws carry school kids in overcrowded and unsafe manner explains how ill concerned we are about road safety.

I remember watching a video posted by .anshuman in the accidents thread where driver got thrown out of the the e-rickshaw in a very low speed crash while he was just turning the e-rickshaw and crash with a slowly coming coming car on the road.

Here is link to original post : http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/street...ml#post3819808


Last edited by GTO : 8th December 2015 at 13:12. Reason: Typos
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Old 8th December 2015, 11:31   #3
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Default re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
In what can be considered as a strange move, Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) is proposing to mandate seat belts for L5M and L5N vehicle categories under a new draft number AIS-134/F.

Considering the fact that an Auto Rickshaw is a mostly open vehicle and pretty much a crudely put together vehicle, not sure if this is a good idea. In case of accidents involving autos, more often than not, the passengers get thrown out, which may be a better option considering the safety (or lack of safety) of the structure.
Thanks for sharing the information Rajeevraj.

My opinion is not against the safety of Auto Rickshaw driver and passengers. But, at this point of time, do we not have more important issues to address than a seat-belt for an Auto Rickshaw? Like the pollution caused by many poorly maintained Auto Rickshaws, their driving habits etc.

IMO, before seat-belt, there is a need to enforce the use of turn indicators for the Auto Rickshaw. Many of them do not use the turn indicator and just take a turn abruptly.

I see many Auto Rickshaws on the road without a working headlight ! Because of this, they do not get noticed easily in the nights, in the glare of an oncoming vehicle.

Many Auto Rickshaws are poorly maintained and they emit a lot of smoke. There are some drivers who take the Auto Rickshaw on a hire from the owner and mix kerosene in the petrol.

I once saw a prominent leader of Auto Rickshaw drivers in Pune, sitting on a fast for some purpose. I went to him and requested him to appeal all the Auto Rickshaw drivers to make sure of a working headlight, in the interest of safety. This leader answered me that the drivers are poor and they do not have money to fit a fuse or a bulb!

Last edited by Rahul Bhalgat : 8th December 2015 at 11:38.
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Old 8th December 2015, 13:08   #4
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

Ah, anther tool for the share-auto wallas to tie couple of more people by their waist to the sides of the auto.

Considering a major bunch of autos are driven like go-karts on a track, it's better to ban them altogether. Taxis are getting cheaper than autos anyways.
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Old 8th December 2015, 14:28   #5
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

ARAI is barking up the wrong tree. This is a ridiculous proposal, since the seatbelt would need to be anchored to a stable structure to be effective. Where is the stable structure in an autorickshaw?

I believe ARAI must be held accountable for the stupid suggestions they make. Right now, they just do the bidding of the manufacturers with no heed to the safety of the passengers or pedestrians. As a first step, I'd like to see ARAI make public the results of the crash testing of all vehicles that it claims to conduct.
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Old 8th December 2015, 14:39   #6
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

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Originally Posted by tbppjpr View Post
Seatbelts rather become more important in such 'open' vehicles where chances of getting thrown out of the vehicle are increased multiple fold than a closed car. Of course the structural integrity of auto-rickshaws is nothing to talk about and they turn out deadly even after little bit of speedy impact but still the chances of injuries can be reduced to great extent by adding seatbelts during low speed crash tests.
This is a highly debatable topic.
You are safe as long as you are seated in a safe structure.
Think about this - If lap belts were introduced in a two wheeler, in the name of enhanced safety, what would happen? Even for minor accidents, it is sure that the rider gets stuck to the seat and hence comes out with a broken leg, who otherwise could have escaped with just bruises!
My thinking is on similar lines. An auto rickshaw is mostly open, and wherever it is covered, it is covered with just canvas. They do not even have neck restraints. Just adding safety belts is just a populist move, in my opinion.
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Old 8th December 2015, 14:53   #7
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

The auto lacks structural rigidity, side impact bars etc. So i think adding a seat belt would be dangerous than the benefit it would give. The chances of getting "stuck" inside an auto is going to be a double edged sword. Did they come up with the suggestion based on some scientific theory ? For eg: What would happen if there is a frontal crash vs Side impact or rear impact ? Or just another "safety" measure thought by an officer who was challenged to show his prowess on innovation at the ARAI ?

Considering the really thin iron bar that supports the roof of the auto rickshaw, they would need heavy re-engineering on the inside using materials like FRP to make the interiors compatible for the seat belts. Wouldn't that reduce the space in the auto rickshaw (which is already so small) or would the auto end up being bigger ?

If the concern is safety then:

1) Re-engineer the auto to have much better safety options - like hard top, side impact bar, and make sure its scientific than a jugaad.
2) Incentivize car purchase and help the auto drivers shift to four wheelers and probably train them with more skills and be part of app based taxi aggregators. Figure out a way to discontinue the Auto rickshaw models eventually - we already have alternatives like tata iris, tata ace etc.
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Old 8th December 2015, 15:20   #8
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

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Originally Posted by hybridpetrol View Post
This is a highly debatable topic.
You are safe as long as you are seated in a safe structure.
Think about this - If lap belts were introduced in a two wheeler, in the name of enhanced safety, what would happen?
...
An auto rickshaw is mostly open, and wherever it is covered, it is covered with just canvas. They do not even have neck restraints. Just adding safety belts is just a populist move, in my opinion.
By that logic helmets should be made compulsory for every occupant in the auto-rickshaw!

Fully agree that structural integrity is top most important factor making a vehicle safer but look at how the children are being carried to the schools in overcrowded manner in these auto-rickshaws.

A school boy from my kid's school died some time ago when the auto-rickshaw carrying him along with many other kids bumped over a pothole and overturned. Speed was nothing since the auto was just passing through a residential street. Its just that the unlucky boy got thrown out before the auto overturned and came under the auto. I feel seatbelts can be handy during such situations.

Few other benefits I see are:

1. If there will be seatbelts then they will be in limited numbers, hence passengers will also be in limited numbers given that the rule is strictly enforced.

2. More people will be introduced to the seatbelts, especially the growing kids. This can turn out a long term step in educating more number of people towards road safety.

Last edited by GTO : 9th December 2015 at 12:11. Reason: Typos
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Old 8th December 2015, 16:22   #9
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

I have myself been in 2 accidents, years back, in Auto-Rickshaws.

- In one case, the Auto rammed into a vehicle that braked hard in front, and a tractor rammed us from the back. I was sitting in the middle rear seat and my face rammed the driver's back-rest, causing extensive lacerations to the right side of my face. The two other occupants also suffered injuries as they were thrown out by the impact.
- In the other case, the driver had a Front Tyre Burst while coming down a Flyover, and the Auto Over-Turned. My arm and body on the right side, had bruises, because I got hurled on the road.

In both cases, had their been seat-belts, I would have been definitely less injured.
I think, this may be a good and welcome move.
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Old 8th December 2015, 17:19   #10
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

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Originally Posted by tbppjpr View Post
1. If there will be seatbelts then they will be in limited numbers, hence passengers will also be in limited numbers given that the rule is strictly enforced.

2. More people will be introduced to the seatbelts, especially the growing kids. This can turn out a long term step in educating more number of people towards road safety.
Very good points!
But, do you think our auto drivers will restrict the number of passengers, just because seat belts are present? There is already a rule stating that auto is to carry 3 passengers. Is it not?
And, think about any Omni van carrying school kids. Are they carrying just enough kids, as these vehicles have seat belts, and do they drive in a safe manner? Many Omni drivers, carrying school kids drive in maniac way, to reach in time. And sure there will be up to 10-15 kids in one Omni.
These drivers can be the ones to teach the kids to wear seat belts for practical use (instead of theory taught in classrooms). But they wont do, because, they cannot stuff a lot of kids in.
This is the problem with our Country. Everyone, general public to policeman and politician, tries to cheat the system one or the other way, and hence all the rules go for a toss.
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Old 8th December 2015, 18:02   #11
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

This move will certainly not work. How many people will wear seatbelts in the backseat of an Auto? Many people don't wear their seatbelts in the rear seat of cars itself. I'm sure that Auto drivers won't follow the rule in the first place.

The extra wheel go a long way in improving stability.

In an age where we must be looking to remove autos in a phased manner, why does ARAI come up with such policies?
It's high time that the unsafe, noisy machine must be eradicated from the urban road.

The government must come up with a plan and announce the project for replacing autos with quadricycles/cars.

Last edited by landcruiser123 : 8th December 2015 at 18:04.
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Old 8th December 2015, 19:19   #12
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

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Originally Posted by landcruiser123 View Post
The government must come up with a plan and announce the project for replacing autos with quadricycles/cars.
Such a move will be a costly one for the Government.
For sure, all auto rickshaw drivers will protest, if they have to spend even one rupee for any such replacements. They would rather drive 20 year old auto which moves at 10 kmph coughing blinding smoke.
If you take a city like Bangalore, there are more autos than required. Most of them roam around in relaxed manner, as they are empty for whole day.
With Cabs taking prominent space, Autos will slowly go away, just like how we said good bye to cycle rickshaws.
Introducing additional equipment on these is pointless in my opinion. What will you do next to an Auto? Driver & Passenger airbags?
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Old 8th December 2015, 21:43   #13
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

Actually we should appreciate the initiatives being taken by ARAI as well as manufacturers regarding safety aspects in regard to road transportation inspite of critisizing them. Don't forget how we people criticize them for not enacting any proper regulations when we see increasing number of posts in the ''accident thread''.
We should be thankful to god that atleast new proposals and regulations are being made regarding road safety. I believe something is always better than nothing. Yes it is possible that it could not be proved to be a wise idea when structural rigidity of auto rickshaws is taken into account but there is always a probablity that it acts as a life saver for someone in any future mishap.
Atleast people will become conscious regarding road safety aspects and we can hope that someday in near future more laws and proposals would be made and appreciated by all of us and certainly it will change the scenario in a very positive manner.
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Old 9th December 2015, 09:39   #14
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

instead of making this compulsory, ARAI must ensure seatbelts for all seats in every bus. I wonder which lobby is preventing something as simple as this to be implemented?

Regarding seatbelts in a canvas topped three wheeler, it makes little sense because the structure of an auto is just skin and bones, with zero impact protection, infact tying people down using belts will ensure more deaths because people can't escape the contraption.

About school kids being transported, that's blatantly illegal, and the blame IMO lies with the parents who blissfully allow 10-15 children be transported in a small three wheeler with no guarantee of safety.
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Old 9th December 2015, 10:18   #15
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Default Re: Proposal from ARAI: Seatbelts in Auto Rickshaws

It is high time that a replacement for the rikshaw is introduced. It should be something structurally more stable, fully covered, but a basic no frill vehicle.
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