Fines for helmetless pillion riders from Feb 1

The police will crack a whip against pillion riders who do not wear helmets from February 1 in Dakshina Kannada district.

ACP Uday Nayak, who spoke to Deccan Herald, said that the rule will be enforced strictly from February 1. The police are creating awareness among the public about the need for pillion riders to wear helmets for safety. The rule applies to children too, he added.

Superintendent of Police Dr Sharanappa S D had recently said that the police will enforce the rule in phases as two-wheeler riders are yet to get used to wearing helmets while riding in rural areas. The Transport Department has also distributed pamphlets among motorists highlighting the importance of wearing helmets while riding.

“Section 129 of the Motor Vehicle Act 1988 empowers the police to book two-wheeler riders for riding without helmets. The police will, therefore, impose a penalty of Rs 100 for the first offence, Rs 300 for the second and will recommend suspension of the driving licence for the third offence. If a pillion rider fails to wear a helmet, the two-wheeler rider will be penalised for violating the rules,” explained the superintendent.

The State government introduced the rule after the Supreme Court Committee on Road Safety directed the states to make wearing helmets mandatory for pillion riders. Following the order, pillion riders were seen on Wednesday wearing helmets in the City.

“In the interest of the safety of the riders, the wearing of helmets for riders and pillion riders is a welcome decision. The riders and pillion riders may face inconvenience for a few days. Over a period of time, however, they will get accustomed to using it,” said a two-wheeler rider Anupama.

A helmet dealer in Balmatta said that the people were buying helmets after the State government published the notification making wearing helmets mandatory for pillion riders. The prices of an ISI-marked full face and open face helmets vary and the helmets are priced between Rs 1,000 and Rs 2,700 in the market.

Following the notification making wearing helmets mandatory, helmets are being sold on the roadsides as well. The helmets were sold near Thokkottu and Pumpwell. There are a few persons who purchase from them. “In rural areas, there is a demand for helmets that are priced at Rs 600 to Rs 700. The riders have shown interest in purchasing helmets,” said Siraj.

The showroom owners say that they sell only branded helmets. The demand might increase after the Police and Transport Department starts penalising the offenders. Though there is no agency which manufactures ISI-marked helmets for children below the age of 12 years, the helmets are available for kids in the market.

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