Road Safety News
 

London trial for new HGV safety system

Friday 6th May 2016

A new fleet safety device aimed at saving the lives of cyclists, pedestrians and other vulnerable road users is being trialled on London’s roads.

Described as a revolutionary patented safety system, DawesGuard™ has been fitted to one of the Keltbray Group’s tipper trucks.

DawesGuard™ creates a shield across the danger zone between the axles of large vehicles. In the event of a collision it prevents a person going under the vehicle and by doing so significantly reduces the risk of serious or fatal injury.

The relationships between lorries and vulnerable road users, in particular cyclists, is one that has been the focus of a number of campaigns. In London, the Met Police’s Exchanging Places helps cyclists and HGV drivers understand the difficulties they each face.

DawesGuard™ has been developed over the past three years by James Dawes, a former motorcycle officer with the Metropolitan Police, in collaboration with accident investigators, safety professionals, victims and the cycling community.

In order to make the design feasible for fleet operators that require an off-road capability, the system can be retracted or deployed with the flick of a switch from inside the cab, thus enabling the vehicle to be used in uneven, off-road environments.

James Dawes said: “It’s a real landmark to see the DawesGuard™ being trialled by Keltbray. They have been fantastic supporters of our design and are seeking to improve the road safety of their tipper fleet with innovative new technology as part of their commitment to road safety.”

Terry Good, head of haulage operations at Keltbray, said: “Road safety is a continuous process, and so we keep investing in equipment to ensure that our vehicles are fitted with ever more modern equipment.

“We are very excited to trial The DawesGuard™ which we hope holds the key to optimising safety and preventing vulnerable road users from entering the danger zones underneath the truck.”

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Alternatively, we could educate those most at risk, cyclist and pedestrians, that being close to large pieces of machinery is a rather silly idea.

Operators are obliged to spend thousands making large vehicles "cycle friendly", extra mirrors, talking indicators, guards, even stickers on the back to remind cyclists that inside passing is foolish. Yet none of these seem to have any real benefit, so perhaps it is time to do the unthinkable, look at the other side of the HGV/Vulnerable user equation.
steve, watford

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