Prevention of leftturn accidents at junctions
Safer lorry designs come closer though moratorium locked in until 2022
On 10th of March negotiations between the Parliament and the Council to allow more aerodynamic and safer HGVs were officially approved by the European Parliament.
In updating the Directive 96/53 on the maximum size and weight of HGVs allowed to cross borders, the new law will allow manufacturers to increase the front of the cabs to increase safety and aerodynamics.
However what seemed a great victory for safer/cleaner HGVs has been soured by heavy lobbying by the industry persuading member states to secure a ban on any changes coming in before 2022 despite the Parliament and the Commission supporting a start date of 2017.
The current brick-shaped cabs have a design size limit of around 2.35m in length, which ECF believe has led to an exaggerated higher driving position being the model for all HGV cabs. New designs would relax the size limitations of cabs to improve the direct vision around the cab, crash performance as well as the deflective shape of the vehicle, leading to less fatal and serious collisions involving cyclists. Proposed safety requirements for HGVs will be put forward as part of the Commissions General Safety Regulations amendments coming up later this year or 2016.
Ceri Woolsgrove ECF Safety policy officer said; "Although HGVs account for around 3% of the EU fleet, around 25% of cycling fatalities are as a result of crashes with some form of HGV, many as a result of the near side turning manoeuvre. Shockingly there is no European regulation on HGV direct vision specifications, only indirect (through mirrors). We have consistently spoken about the need to improve direct vision from HGVs and we hope that this can be the catalyst to provide fit for purpose HGVs on European roads, particularly in urban areas."
 The rules will be adopted by member states by 2019, but there
will be a three-year moratorium on their use.
 The safety regulations will be brought together under the General Safety Regulation type approval review in 2015/2016