GPS, panic button compulsory for existing vehicles too

In buses and taxis, the panic button can alert the central control room and the global positioning system (GPS) device will help monitor traffic violations like overspeeding and reckless driving.

The Union government's rule of making the panic button and vehicle tracking devices compulsory for transport will also apply to existing vehicles, the state transport department has clarified.

Speaking at an event here, Transport Minister D C Thammanna said the department will soon initiate an action plan to implement the rule aimed at providing emergency response as well as tracking traffic violations like overspeeding. 

The notification by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways had said that the rule will come into force for new vehicles from January 1. The state government was allowed to take a call on installation of devices in the existing vehicles in a time-bound manner. 

As per the rule, more than 10 lakh buses, 3.3 lakh cabs and over 5 lakh transport (goods and multi-axled) vehicles have to install the device, which is estimated to cost between Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000. 

In buses and taxis, the panic button can alert the central control room and the global positioning system (GPS) device will help monitor traffic violations like overspeeding and reckless driving. In goods vehicles, a device will also check the load of the vehicle and alert the control room on overloading. 

Asked whether the state has the required infrastructure to track lakhs of vehicles, Transport Commissioner V P Ikkeri said they will look into the tenders called by other states and incorporate the systems into the action plan.

"There will be initial hiccups when we want to start anything new. But steps will be taken to address the issues that we are likely to face," he said. 

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