How many people in India succumb to road accidents daily? Well, the numbers are disturbing and while the lack of safety bits like airbags, ABS and EBD are usually blamed, the sheer ignorance of not using the basic safety equipment ‘seatbelt’ is often the reason behind loss of so many lives. Why we do not put on the seatbelts during our commute and wait until we sight the traffic police? Here is something that will jolt you up.
In 2016 alone, around 5,638 people lost their lives for just not wearing seatbelts in India. India’s leading auto maker, Maruti Suzuki India and Kantar Group (Milward Brown & IMRB) recently conducted a survey in 17 cities in India and found out that just 25% passenger vehicle occupants wear seat belts. Based on the research conducted in 17 cities in India, some interesting behavioural factors have been revealed for not wearing seat belts. Here are some of them, read on to know more. Read – Airbags & Other Safety Features Mandatory in All Indian Cars From Oct 2017
1. Lack Of A Stern Reform
Not many of us know that according to a clause in Chapter VI of ‘The Central Motor Vehicles Act 1989’, a fine of Rs 1000 can be levied on a driver for not wearing seatbelt or even for carrying passengers not wearing seatbelts in his motor vehicle. The data from the survey reveals around 32% drivers cited lack of a stern reform as the primary reason for not wearing a seatbelt. Another trend that came across is that passengers usually don’t wear seatbelts in most parts of India (barring drivers). While the drivers usually wear seatbelts not for their own safety, but because of the fear of getting caught by the traffic police.
2. It Impacts Image Negatively
In some cases, not buckling up while travelling makes them look like an unconfident or novice driver. According to data, 23% respondents said wearing seatbelts impact their image negatively. Read – Mumbai, Delhi Lead Road Safety Index Released by Maruti Suzuki India
3. Appearance Over Safety
Shockingly, people also admitted to not wearing seatbelt as it might crush their ironed outfit. Around 22% driver said they prefer not wearing seatbelts for fear of ruining their clothes.
4. Airbags Suffice Safety Requirements
Most of the people feel airbags equipped in their vehicle make it safe to withstand accidents.However, airbags alone do not make vehicles accident-proof. A seatbelt is a primary restraint system and the first line of defence that protects occupants from all types of collisions. Airbags on the other hand are designed to work with seatbelts and hence both are equally important. Around 19% drivers believe airbags suffice safety requirements in their car. Read – Varun Dhawan Gets e-Challan From Mumbai Police For Taking Selfie On Road
5. Influence From Peer Groups And Family
It is a common human tendency to imitate friends and family in a bid to fit in the group. The data collected during the survey supports this as 18% drivers confessed to not wearing seatbelt as they are simply influenced by their friends and family.
The only way to change the mindset of people is by becoming more responsible and putting up an example in front of family, friends and colleagues. A small effort can bring about a significant change in us and people around us. We should not only wear seatbelts (whether we drive or sit on the passenger seat) but also encourage others to buckle-up while travelling.