HGVs will now be rated for ‘direct vision’ in London, under new rules put in place by Transport for London. In the new rating system, lorries will be assessed to see how good a view the driver has from their cab of what’s going on around them. Any vehicles which don’t meet the requirements could be banned from London’s roads in a bid to keep them safer for smaller vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians.

london HGV

Vehicles with the greatest amount of visibility around the cab will get a higher rating than those with lower visibility. The ratings are from zero stars to five stars, and only HGVs rated three stars or above will be allowed to drive on the capital’s roads from 2024 onwards. Any vehicles which don’t have a high direct vision rating, but do have comprehensive safety systems in place, will also be allowed on the roads.

The new rating system is as a result of a growing problem with accidents involving HGVs on London’s roads. Lorries are involved in a disproportionate number of accidents in the city, up to 58% of accidents in contrast to their presence on the roads where they make up just 4% of traffic. Many of the accidents HGVs are involved in also include cyclists and pedestrians, who are either seriously hurt or killed.

It’s hoped that these new measures will dramatically decrease the number of HGV related accidents and make the streets safer for everyone. Accidents are often caused by a lack of direct vision in heavy traffic, meaning HGVs don’t see smaller vehicles, pedestrians or cyclists until it’s too late.

Under these new rules, manufacturers and haulage companies would be under pressure to make their vehicles as safe as possible, otherwise they risk losing out on work to companies with better safety measures in place.

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