The Delhi Declaration announced by recently held Global Transport Minister’s forum on Road Safety held in the National Capital which was attended by Transport Ministers from various countries has stressed on encourage all the car manufactures to sign up to a UN agreement on minimum vehicle safety standards, covering passive and active safety requirements including making fitting of Electronic Stability Control (ESC) systems mandatory for all new vehicles by all the governments worldwide including India.

The Global Transport Ministers forum on Road Safety was organised by International Road Federation (IRF), a Geneva based global road safety body working for better and safer roads world wide in New Delhi on November 14, 2017 and was attended by Transport Ministers from various countries including Russia, Canada, Finland, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Burundi, Lesotho, Luxembourg along with FIA President and UN special envoy on road safety Jean Todt. The conference was inaugurated by Union health and Family welfare minister Mr J P Nadda along with Mr Yudhvir Malik, Secretary, Minitry of Road Transport and Highways (moRTH)

Some of major countries including Canada and Australia have already made installation of Electronic Stability Control (ESC) mandatory in all new vehicles. Electronic stability control (ESC) is an active safety feature designed to reduce the number and severity of motor vehicle crashes that result from a loss of control. ESC provides traction and anti-skid support in cases of over steering and under steering. Over-steering occurs when the vehicle continues to turn beyond the driver’s steering input because the rear end is sliding outwards. Under-steering occurs when the vehicle turns less than the driver’s steering input because the wheels have insufficient traction.

ESC systems are made up of several computer/sensor subcomponents that are monitored and controlled by an electronic control unit (ECU)..The ECU continually retrieves information from these sensors and compiles the data to determine if any difference exists between the driver’s steering input and the vehicle’s actual direction of travel.

ESC is very effective at reducing the number of severe motor vehicle crashes involving both passenger cars and sport utility vehicles (SUVs). As per various studies ESC reduces fatal single-vehicle crash risk by 49%, and fatal multiple-vehicle crash risk by 20% for both cars and SUVs ESC also helps prevent rollovers. Some of major car manufcaturers inlcuding BMW, Audi, Toyota and Ford are already producing cars fitted with ESC systems in some of their models.

“The other recommendations made by Transport Minister’s forum include providing access to safe, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems for all, improving road safety, notably by expanding public transport, with special attention to the needs of those in vulnerable situations, women, children, persons with disabilities and older persons by the year 2030,” said MR K K Kapila, Chairman, International Road Federation (IRF) releasing the recommendations today .

“Scaling up road safety efforts by reaffirming the importance of improving road management systems and to introduce road safety audits for new construction projects and road safety assessment programmes and star rating systems for the existing networks and recognise the need for capacity building to this effect. Emphasizing on the need to strengthen pre-hospital care, including emergency health services and the immediate post-crash response, through the implementation of appropriate legislation, capacity-building and improvement of timely access to health care.” He said.

“Governments should Commit to implement professional driver qualification frameworks, including training, certification and licensing, restricted hours of driving and working conditions with focus on addressing the main causes of accidents or crashes involving heavy commercial vehicles. Also commit to enhance road safety culture of all road users through road safety education in schools and awareness programmes, particularly in developing countries. “ he added.