TfL has today launched the final public consultation on its world-first Direct Vision Standard proposals, which will tackle road danger at its source by eliminating Heavy Goods Vehicles' (HGVs') blind spots that are the cause of so many tragic deaths and life-changing injuries. The Direct Vision Standard, and associated Safety Permit for HGVs that have retrofitted a Safe System, will reduce road danger for people across the capital.
In 2017 around 4,000 people were killed or seriously injured in collisions on London's streets, which is unacceptable. TfL research shows that between 2015 and 2017 HGVs were disproportionately involved in fatal collisions, with 63 per cent of those involving people cycling and 25 per cent of those involving people walking. This is despite HGVs only making up four per cent of the overall miles driven in the capital. TfL is now asking people to have their say on the final scheme proposals with a particular focus on the HGV safety permit processes. As part of the consultation, people can comment on:
The process for obtaining a vehicle's direct vision star rating
The safe system requirements
The permit application and administration process
The enforcement and appeals process
The European Commission has followed London's lead by including direct vision in the revised General Safety Regulation, which is the leading piece of EU road safety legislation.
This is a major step in reducing road danger and will help make all HGVs safer across Europe. The Direct Vision Standard forms a key part of the Mayor's Vision Zero approach to eliminating all deaths and serious injuries from London's roads by 2041. Restrictions in an HGV driver's field of vision, or 'blind spots' have been identified as a significant contributory factor in collisions. The HGV Safety Permit is a holistic approach which aims to improve the overall safety of HGVs through blind spot elimination and minimisation, warning of intended manoeuvre, minimising the physical impact of a hazard and recommending driver safety training. Will Norman, London's Walking and Cycling Commissioner, said: 'I am proud that London will be the first city in the world to take such bold action to remove the most unsafe lorries from our streets. 'We are not prepared to stand by and let dangerous lorries continue to cause further heartbreak and tragedy on London's roads. 'We are doing everything we can to make our roads safer. Improving HGV safety standards will dramatically reduce danger for both cyclists and pedestrians. 'Taking action against dangerous lorries will help a lot more Londoners feel safe cycling as part of their everyday routine, improving their health, and helping tackle air pollution across our city. 'Road safety mustn't end at our borders, which is why I'm delighted that the European Commission is following our lead - helping ensure that all HGVs are safer across the UK and Europe.'