Larger vehicles

fleet of lorries

Many different types of large vehicles, including skip lorries, dumper trucks, box vans, concrete mixer trucks, articulated HGVs and passenger carrying vehicles such as minibuses, coaches and buses share the road with motorists, pedestrians and cyclists.

Although, there are relatively few collisions between large vehicles other road users, when they do occur, they often result in serious or fatal injury. However, for every mile travelled, people in minibuses are less likely to be involved in an accident than people in cars.

Our advice provides information for both lorry, van, bus, coach and minibus drivers and other road users, offering advice on how these collisions can be avoided.

Cyclists and lorries

Cyclists share the roads with many different types of large vehicles, including skip lorries, dumper trucks, box vans, concrete mixer trucks, articulated HGVs and so on.

Although cyclists have relatively few collisions with these types of vehicles, those that do occur are very often serious and, in far too many instances, fatal for the cyclist. Nearly all of these crashes happen at or near junctions in built-up areas.

HGVs and vulnerable road users

Many different types of large vehicles, including skip lorries, dumper trucks, box vans, concrete mixer trucks, articulated HGVs and so on, share the road with pedestrians, pedal cyclists and motorcyclists. Although there are relatively few collisions between large vehicles and these vulnerable road users, when they do occur, they often result in serious or fatal injury.

The use of HGVs on our roads is governed by a comprehensive regulatory regime. A considerable amount of work is also underway, particularly with good practice management schemes and technological solutions. In recent years, there has been considerable focus on understanding the risk to cyclists and developing measures to reduce this risk. However, not enough attention has been paid to the risk to pedestrians: more work needs to be done in this area, especially as more pedestrians and are killed or injured in collisions with HGVs than cyclists.

Research has shown that the way HGVs are currently designed results in several blind spots, meaning vulnerable road users can easily be hidden from the direct vision of the driver, creating a huge potential accident risk for cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians. A new standard is required for the construction of HGVs that allows vulnerable road users to be more visible to the driver.

It can often be difficult for cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians to interact safely with large vehicles, especially in crowded, busy urban areas. Therefore, it is crucial to design roads and streets to cater for the needs of vulnerable road users. The Safe System Approach includes many measures to prevent fatal collisions from occurring. The two main approaches are separating different road users by physical infrastructure, and where separation cannot be achieved, reducing vehicle speeds to reduce the likelihood of crashes occurring and the severity of any that do occur so they are unlikely to cause fatal injuries.

Left hand drive large goods vehicles (LHD HGVs)

The number of left-hand drive HGVs (LHD HGVs) using the UK's roads has increased significantly over the last decade or so.

In 2016, 267 people were killed, 1,017 seriously injured and 6,212 slightly injured in road accidents involving HGVs that were reported to the police in Britain. Of these, 9 people were killed, 37 seriously injured and 381 slightly injured in road accidents involving foreign registered left hand drive HGVs.

Therefore, 3.3% of deaths in accidents with HGVs (and just under 1% of all road deaths) involve foreign registered left hand drive HGVS, as do 3.6% of serious injuries and 6.1% of slight injuries.

 

Minibuses

Minibuses provide a vital service for many people and organisations, enabling them to run an impressive range of social and educational activities.
 
However, driving a minibus is significantly different from driving a car. A minibus is larger, longer, wider and heavier than a car, and its steering, cornering and braking characteristics are markedly different.
 
Another important difference is the number of passengers being carried, some of whom may have special needs, may be taken ill on the journey, and who may need supervising.
 
The Minibus Driver’s Handbook is intended to help drivers who are driving a minibus on behalf of such organisations to ensure that they drive safely, within the law and follow the rules and procedures set down by the minibus operator.

Minibus pre-drive safety checklist

This check should be completed every day the minibus is used, and whenever another driver takes over the vehicle. Walk around the minibus, including the trailer if applicable, to check for visible defects, and the items listed below.

 

Minibus code of practice

The aim of this Code of Practice is to help organisations that own, hire or lease minibuses, to provide a safe, effective and efficient service.


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