Explained | What is Bharat New Car Assessment Program (BNCAP) - UPSC Current Affairs

Explained | What is Bharat New Car Assessment Program (BNCAP) - UPSC Current Affairs

Read our daily dose of Current Affairs wherein we talk about the crucial updates of national and international importance. In today’s edition, we will discuss Bharat New Car Assessment Program.

Navigate further to enhance your UPSC preparation and check the topic’s relevance to the UPSC CSE syllabus.

For Prelims: Bharat NCAP, Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, Global NCAP

For Mains: Vehicular Safety, Road Safety, Bharat New Car Assessment Program

Context

Recently, the Union Minister for Road, Transport, and Highways has approved a Draft GSR Notification seeking public opinion on introducing the Bharat New Car Assessment Program (BNCAP) or Bharat NCAP.

Probable Question

Road accidents are one of the leading causes of death in India. Discuss the BNCAP initiative drafted to achieve zero accidents in India, and how it evaluates vehicles to ensure safety?

Also Read our Blog on Global Road Safety Report  

About BNCAP

  • Bharat New Car Assessment Program (BNCAP) is a star rating for vehicles based on their performance in crash tests.
  • It is a voluntary program that aligns with existing test regulations and global crash testing protocols. 
  • The existing test regulations are to assess ‘roadworthy’ vehicles, whereas Bharat NCAP evaluates their ‘crashworthiness’. 
  • Objectives of BNCAP:
    • To increase the export-worthiness of vehicles.
    • To increase competition on safety parameters among manufacturers.
    • To instill consumer confidence in a vehicle’s safety. 
    • To make India the Number 1 automobile hub in the world.
  • To introduce the changes, a new rule 126E dealing with the BNCAP will be added to the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, according to it –
    • The domestic testing agencies will carry out voluntary testing of vehicles for the M1 category of vehicles, (vehicles for the carriage of passengers, that have not more than 8 seats apart from the driver’s seat and weighing less than 3.50 tonnes). 
  • The rule would be applicable from April 1, 2023, subject to its clearance.

About the Global NCAP

  • The Global New Car Assessment Programme was established in 2011.
  • It is the United Nations’ standard for vehicular safety and for universal adoption, establishing cooperation and coordination among new car assessment programs (NCAPs). 
  • Its information about the crash safety of a vehicle, is based on certain common criteria and procedures, provided information. 
  • It helps the vehicle to acquire a foothold in international markets.
  • The BNCAP would be the Indian adaptation of the Global New Car Assessment Program (GNCAP) that serves as a globally followed paradigm.

Evaluation of Vehicles under BNCAP

  • It would assign one and five stars rating to vehicles.
  • Safety is evaluated on various parameters such as Adult Occupant Protection (AOP), Child Occupant Protection (COP), and Safety Assist Technologies (SAT).
  • The dummy is assessed for any potential injury on the head, neck, chest, knee, pelvis area, lower leg, foot, or ankle.
  • The vehicles must have a manual switch to disable airbags which must not be within the child’s reach.
  • The frontal impact, side impact, and the possibility of a door opening up after a collision are studied.
  • The vehicles with a permanent warning label on frontal airbags, would be given a higher rating. 
  • The speed for frontal offset crash testing – is proposed to change to 64 kmph from the existing 56 kmph.

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Way Forward

  • The initiative is to reduce road accidents by 50 % by the year 2025.
  • It can be a turning point in the domestic automotive sector – in terms of product, technology, and safety, as it would test vehicular safety as per Indian conditions.
  • The grading system must be made mandatory for all original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) so that the choice is entirely left to the customer. 
  • The proposed norm may not make a difference in raising export worthiness, as all vehicles exported to the E.U. or North America need to be homologated (approved for sale or use by authorities) in the respective country. 
  • The potential customers will eventually get the vehicle at an increased price, but a safer vehicle.
Additional InformationThe United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was the first to come up with an NCAP in 1978.A good or bad rating in a regional NCAP would not prevent a car from being ineligible for sale elsewhere, as it is not the case in another geography.

Source: The Hindu

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