New Standard will ‘revolutionise the safety’ of HGVs

08.09 | 30 April 2019 | | 4 comments

An initiative to protect vulnerable road users in London from the ‘most dangerous’ heavy goods vehicles will launch in October, with enforcement to commence in 2020, TfL has confirmed.

First announced in 2016, the Direct Vision Standard is designed to tackle road danger at its source by minimising blind spots on HGVs.

Under the Direct Vision Standard, HGVs will be categorised depending on the level of a driver’s direct vision from a cab – and will be given a rating between ‘zero-star’ (lowest) and ‘five-star’ (highest).

Only vehicles rated ‘one-star’ and above, or those that have comprehensive safety systems, will be able to operate in London from 2020. From 2024, the minimum requirement will be raised to ‘three-star’.

HGVs that do not meet the required Direct Vision Standard star rating will need to improve their overall safety through the introduction of ‘Safe System mitigating measures’ such as cameras, sensors and audible warnings.

HGV operators will have to apply for a permit via an online portal on TfL’s website, from October 2019 onwards.

Timeline for the Direct Vision Standard:

  • October 2019: The first permits will be issued. Trucks rated 0* will need to upgrade to a Safe System in order to get a permit
  • 2020: Enforcement begins
  • 2024: The minimum Direct Vision Standard star rating increases from one to three star

‘Positive public response’
Research shows that between 2015 and 2017, HGVs were disproportionately involved in fatal collisions with people cycling (63%) and walking (25%) on London’s streets, despite only making up 4% of the miles driven.

In January 2019, TfL launched a public consultation – and says the majority of respondents were supportive of the final scheme proposals.

61% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed with the proposed process for obtaining a vehicle star rating – while 67% strongly agreed or agreed with the proposed safe system mitigating measures (including cameras and mirrors).

Will Norman, London’s walking and cycling commissioner, said: “I’m delighted by the support that the public has shown for our world-leading plans to remove the most unsafe lorries from our streets.

“In just a few months’ time London will become the first city in the world to introduce safety permits for lorries, reducing the chances of further heartbreak and tragedy on our roads.

“Improving HGV safety standards will dramatically reduce danger for both cyclists and pedestrians. This will enable more people to cycle and walk as part of their everyday routine – improving their health and helping tackle London’s toxic air.”



Comment on this story

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Report a reader comment

Order by Latest first | Oldest first | Highest rated | Lowest rated

    Different road users limitations of vision ? In the case of poorly sighted pedestrians yes but people in charge of dangerous machinery should have all the vision needed to prevent injuries ; or should not be on the highway.

    Paul Luton, Teddington
    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    “London vehicles will now need to be driven by drivers who are only able to look through devices with up to 20% peripheral vision. Anything making it easier or clearer for a driver to see others on the road will be banned, for fear of this allowing drivers to go too fast.”

    There Charles from Wells, I fixed that for you.

    Agree (0) | Disagree (0)

    Better direct vision will surely lead to more driver confidence and so faster driving speeds and a reduced need to concentrate on the job in hand. Let’s hope that the collision rates don’t increase as a result.

    Charles, Wells
    Agree (4) | Disagree (7)

    Any initiative to genuinely improve road safety should be welcomed. All road users – driving, riding, or walking – have a role to play in sharing the road, and taking care around one another to recognise different road users limitations of vision.

    Ben Graham, Reading
    Agree (1) | Disagree (0)

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.