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Employers urged to protect workers from commercial vehicles

Jun 01, 2015
SteerSafe, which is represented by key members of the transport industry including veteran safety campaigner Chris Hanson-Abbott OBE, spoke out after the Health and Safety Executive called on operators to prioritise worker-safety in 2015.


Official figures reveal that one of the top three hazards at work is failing to manage workplace transport safety correctly.  Others include falling from heights and failure properly to maintain and protect against dangerous equipment.

Hanson-Abbott, who has been involved in road safety for nearly 40 years, and who launched the 1980s National Reverse in Safety Campaign said, “Four decades after I first started campaigning accidents still happen.  I am shocked at the hazards posed by a moving Commercial Vehicle.  Slow speed manoeuvring is the prime cause.  A comprehensive range of safety systems is available off the shelf yet only a rear-view mirror is required by law.  Try seeing the blind area behind a truck with one of those.  And what about all those other blind-spots?”  

“There will always be cowboy operators who refuse to pay for safety unless a system is required specifically by law,” said Hanson-Abbott. “But the law is long out of date.  Hence operators serious about safety feel obliged to fit extra safety equipment to cover those hazard areas not addressed by the regulations while the cowboys get a cost advantage at the expense of the conscientious.  A vehicle should be fully equipped for a lone driver to perform any manoeuvre safely.  This is easy today.  Anything less is unacceptable.”

SteerSafe is much wider in scope than Hanson-Abbott’s earlier campaign and covers all dangerous blind-spot manoeuvres, not just reversing. These include the mortally dangerous long-vehicle left turn with an unseen cyclist on the nearside.


Photo: Chris Hanson-Abbott demonstrates life-saving equipment

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