These accessories or modifications were banned by Road Transport Ministry and are yet being blatantly installed
Any type of car modification is considered illegal. Buyers head straight to accessory shops to fit sun films, curtains and bull bars in an effort to protect their car from minor damages / scratches or more attractive – blatantly flouting the stringently laid down norms by the Road Transport Ministry.
Under Section 52 of Motor Vehicle Act, bull bars were considered illegal. Use of these accessories attracted penalties under Section 190 and Section 191 of MVA and a circular to this effect was also issued by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways in 2017.
Crackdown in Tamil Nadu
However, car owners continue to get bull bars fitted in an effort to save their vehicles from dents and scratches, little realizing that these fitments are actually a danger to both occupants and pedestrians. A crackdown on cars fitted with bull bars by the police has been launched and several cars have been seized and fined as a part of this exercise.
The Tamil Nadu police have once again revived their efforts to stop vehicles from using such bull bars. They are stopping such cars, removing the bars on the spot and fining the owners for use of this illegal accessory.
A recent video has emerged wherein the police have stopped a Toyota Innova fitted with a bull bar in the front. The bull bar has been removed and a challan issued to the owner of the Innova.
The video goes on to show off another car of the similar model wherein the police are trying to challan the owner but the owner is taking to the police giving them reasons for this installation. He states that the reason for this accessory is so that it detects a crash in advance and deploys the airbag. This is not only a wrong but also a dangerous mindset.
Bullbars are unsafe
There are sensors installed on the front of the car and if it is hampered by a bull bar, these sensors may not detect any crash at all and the airbags will in-fact fail or delay to deploy. This delay could cost a life or cause grievous injuries to the occupants.
The bull bar is also bolted to the chassis of the car which could also get damaged on impact. The Police Officer thereby managed to convince the owner who stops to argue and obediently pays the fine.
Prevents Air Bag Deployment
Bull bars prevent deployment of airbags in the event of a crash as they cover parts where the sensors are fitted to trigger off deployment of the airbags. This after market fitment also tampers with the chassis of the car which in turn compromises the structural strength of the car.
Bull bars also have an adverse effect on the aerodynamics of a vehicle. It compromises stability and fuel efficiency as well. Apart from putting the lives of the occupants in the car at risk, these bull bars can also cause injuries to pedestrians and this is one of the primary reasons for it being banned in India.