Transport for London and London Councils are moving forward with plans to improve road safety in London by making changes to London’s Direct Vision Standard (DVS) based HGV safety permit scheme, following a decision made by London Councils Transport and Environment Committee.
Under previously agreed arrangements, from 28 October 2024, HGVs over 12 tonnes will be required to have a minimum three-star DVS rating or fit a system of updated safety features – the Progressive Safe System (PSS) – to the vehicle in order to operate in Greater London. In order to give the freight industry sufficient time to buy, fit and test any new safety equipment, there will be a three month grace period from 28 October 2024 for operators to comply with the new PSS. This will be kept under review and in June 2024, London Councils Transport and Environment Committee will consider whether any further extension is needed. The changes aim to further enhance the safety standards of HGVs operating in the capital, thereby reducing the risks to vulnerable road users such as people walking and cycling.
London’s HGV safety permit scheme, first introduced in 2019, requires all operators of HGVs weighing more than 12 tonnes to apply for a free safety permit to operate in London, regardless of its DVS star rating. An HGV’s DVS star rating is based on how much the driver can see directly through the vehicle’s cab windows of the area around the vehicle where collisions are most likely to take place.
Data shows that fatal collisions where vision is a contributing factor have reduced by half between 2018 and 2021 (down from 12 to 6). Provisional data also shows that fatal collisions where vision is a contributing factor have also continued to fall from 2021 to 2023 (down from 6 to 3) This shows the importance of the HGV safety permit scheme in reducing road danger in London and achieving the Mayor’s Vision Zero goal of eliminating death and serious injury from London’s transport network.
(Picture – TfL)