In a country where 16 fatalities occur per hour, there is an urgent need to ensure better safety for consumers.

One of the issues that will be on focus at a four-day mobility conference inaugurated on Wednesday is finding ways to develop technology for safe, green vehicles.

The conference, organised by Society of Automotive Engineers India (SAEINDIA), is the first of its kind. Governor K. Rosaiah, who inaugurated the conference, urged companies to concentrate on developing technologies that would make travel safe.

Mr. Rosaiah said the State government’s industry-friendly policies had made it possible for Chennai to become an automobile hub attracting investment and human resources.

The automobile industry in Chennai is the biggest contributor to national revenue with a 35 per cent share, while Mumbai and Pune contribute 33 per cent and the national capital region contributes 32 per cent, he said.

Mr. Rosaiah urged the participants at the conference to innovate, develop cost-effective solutions and create a roadmap for making green technology a priority. Around 800 delegates from various segments of the industry are participating in the four-day conference. The members said the economic slowdown had affected this segment of business, which employs around 20 million people.

Vinod Dasari, managing director of Ashok Leyland, said there are just five vehicles per 1,000 persons, indicating significant potential for growth in the commercial vehicle sector.

The conference will look for ways to improve the concentration of commercial vehicles and create safer vehicles.

The challenges thrown by the country’s potholed roads, overcrowding, extreme temperature and indifferent maintenance of vehicles can be translated into opportunities to innovate, he said.

Mr. Dasari wants the government to implement the bus code which is now in the draft stage; introduce speed governance mechanisms and initiate traffic management education to reduce accidents on road.

More In: Chennai | News