Pune: The Pune traffic police and Regional Transport Office (RTO) have started taking action against SUVs that have installed ‘bull bars’ or ‘crash guards’.
The traffic police have taken action against 492 vehicles that have such bull bars and collected a fine of Rs 4,51,500 from them.
The Ministry of Highways and Road Transport (MORTH) has clearly stated to put a ban on crash guards or bull bars on cars and SUVs.
The Ministry has asked the states to take action against the unauthorised fitment of crash guard/ bull bars as per Section 52 of the Motor Vehicles Act.
Vehicles with crash guard or bull bars will be penalised under Section 190 and Section 191 of the Motor Vehicles Act.
Most car owners use the crash guard to protect the vehicle from heavy damage, saving the vehicles from scratches.
“The bull bars have been declared dangerous for vehicle safety and adding them to the vehicle could draw a penalty from government authorities. As the government mandate says, certain car modifications without prior permission from the RTO will be considered as a completely illegal move,” said Sanjay Raut, Deputy RTO, Pune.
“The notice was issued by the ministry in December and we have instructed all motor vehicle inspectors to start taking action against these vehicles. The Pune RTO and the traffic police are taking action,” he said.
With this rule, several customised vehicle owners across the city are facing the heat from the traffic department.
As the Central government notice reveals, fitment of crash guards or bull bars poses a serious safety threat to pedestrians and the occupants of the concerned vehicle as well.
The crash guard can protect cars in a small accident from damage to the vehicle, but in case of a major accident, it may lead to non-functioning of airbags, as it reduces the shock level to the vehicle sensors that cause the opening of airbags.
However, citizens are still uncertain about removing their crash guards. Rahul Paigude, who removed the crash guard from his vehicle after action was taken against him, said, “The crash guard offers safeguards to my vehicle from damage, which it may face due to rickshaws, bicycles and bikes bumping into it in heavy traffic. But I paid heavy amount during the drive that was conducted by the traffic police.”