FIA President Jean Todt says bringing canopies into motorsport to improve cockpit safety needs to be looked at very carefully to understand what is practical.
Since the deaths of IndyCar driver Justin Wilson last August and F1 star Jules Bianchi last July the FIA has keenly investigated potential cockpit safety methods and the proposal of canopy solutions, which have been evaluated by FIA's safety director Laurent Mekies.
With ongoing tests potentially signalling new safety measures to be implemented as early as 2017 in F1 and other single-seater racers, Todt stresses the canopy should not impact the sporting element and be used if it is feasible.
“Firstly, we don't want to deter the speciality of each category of motorsport,” Todt said. “On the other side, we must make sure that we do any attempt which is feasible to optimise safety.
“So we need to get behind the engineers and be very careful to see what would be the proposal. I must say we have been working very strongly in improving road safety and safety is part of our daily responsibility.”
Wilson passed away on the 24th August 2015, two days after being struck by an errant piece of debris from a collision further up the road at the Pocono Raceway, while Bianchi collided with a recovery tractor after slipping off a wet track at Suzuka and after being put into a medically-induced coma, died from his injuries on the 17th July 2015.
Discussions over closed cockpits were first raised in 2009 in the wake of Felipe Massa's serious accident at the Hungaroring, when he suffered head injuries after being struck by debris.