In a press release issued on 1 June, Transport for London (TfL) claims that its Direct Vision Standard (DVS), introduced in March this year, is “already helping to save lives” and warns of a further tightening of regulations in 2024.
The release did not however reveal how many deaths and injuries had been recorded since March compared to previous years and the TfL press office was unable to provide The Mover with figures to substantiate the claim.
TfL's Direct Vision Standard scheme requires owners of Heavy Good Vehicles (HGVs) weighing more than 12 tonnes to apply for a free permit that assigns vehicles a star rating based on how much the driver can see directly through their cab windows in order to be able to drive in London.
To date, more than 136,000 permits have been issued, including more than 4,000 to 5-star vehicles, which provide the highest levels of direct vision. Around 70,000 0-star HGVs have now had safe systems fitted, improving protection for people walking, cycling or riding e-scooters or motorcycles.
Those without a permit face a penalty charge notice (PCN) of up to £550 and since March around 7,000 PCNs have been issued. TfL enforcement officers also carry out roadside inspections to check that HGVs are safe and safety measures are in place, resulting in some permits being revoked.
HGVs accounted for just 3% of the overall miles driven in London 2018-20, yet were involved in nearly half (41%) of fatal collisions involving people cycling and 19% involving people walking.
The Direct Vision Standard forms part of Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan’s Vision Zero plan to eliminate all deaths and serious injuries from London's streets by 2041.
Photo: Sadiq Khan