Visakhapatnam

Traffic rule enforcement bringsa windfall for helmet sellers

Brisk business: Two-wheelers checking out helmets at a shop in Visakhapatnam on Tuesday.

Brisk business: Two-wheelers checking out helmets at a shop in Visakhapatnam on Tuesday.  

Average sale has registered at least three-fold increase, they say

The strict enforcement of the road safety regulations has turned out to be windfall for the helmet sellers even as the sale as of scooters and motorcycles have registered the worst-ever slump in the last two decades in August this year.

Though the revised hefty fines for violation of traffic rules are yet to be enforced in the State, the police and traffic personnel have intensified checks on the motorists especially those riding without wearing helmets. And this has made the two-wheeler riders throng the outlets selling helmets and the sale of the headgear has witnessed a spurt.

The branded helmet stores report at least three-fold increase in the sales, while the roadside vends are also making a brisk business since the enforcement drive began in the city.“The average sale has gone up from around 40 a day in the past to 120 a day. The price range is between ₹400 to ₹4,000. Unfortunately, a majority of the buyers are asking for cheap, low-weight and ‘cap type’ helmets, that barely protects the head. They seem to be more worried about being caught by the police rather than protecting their heads,” says Nandu of Biker’s Studio, a retail outlet.

He says that 70% of buyers go for full helmets. “A helmet should be tight-fitting and the rider (or pillion) should invariably strap it up for safety. Many riders do not heed this advice and in the event of a fall, the helmet will not be of any use, as it will get detached from the head. The area above the neck is crucial as the spinal cord starts from there and it can be damaged,” he explains.

Quality matters

Deputy Transport Commissioner G.C. Raja Ratnam says that the BIS (ISI mark) helmets are available in different variants and sizes. “These helmets undergo crash tests and are considered safe. Our appeal to two-wheeler riders is to go for quality helmets,” he says.

Motor Vehicle Act

Most of the road accidents involve two-wheelers, and more than 50 % of the fatalities are due to the rider not wearing a helmet. “Pillion riders should also wear helmets. This rule is not new and it is mandated by the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988,” he adds.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 2:12:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Visakhapatnam/traffic-rule-enforcement-bringsa-windfall-for-helmet-sellers/article29389150.ece

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