London to mandate cameras and sensors on trucks to protect VRUs


Transport for London (TfL) has announced that from October 2024 heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) over 12 metric tons driving in the capital will have to pass new more stringent tests to protect vulnerable road users (VRUs), which may mean fitting mirror-replacement Camera Monitoring Systems (CMS) .

The new more stringent requirements are an extension of the existing HGV safety permit scheme – the Direct Vision Standard (DVS), first introduced in 2019.

Fatal collisions where vision is a factor have fallen by 75 per cent following the introduction of DVS
Improving vehicle safety features will further reduce the level of risk to vulnerable road users including people walking and cycling.

Under previously proposed arrangements, 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.

253,745 safety permits have been issued, including nearly 6,000 to 5-star vehicles, which provide the highest levels of direct vision. More than 151,000 zero-star HGVs have now had safe systems fitted, improving protection for people walking, cycling or riding e-scooters or motorcycles.

The scheme’s average daily compliance is also very high, with more than 94%  of HGVs in London now operating with a safety permit, and hauliers are reporting that they are building DVS requirements into future purchasing decisions.

A TfL consultation showed an encouraging level of support (55 per cent) for the principles of DVS, the HGV safety permit scheme and the principles underpinning the Progressive Safe System.

Changes include: 

• Updating existing guidance on the use of mirrors and mirror-replacement Camera Monitoring Systems (CMS) 
• The requirement for CMS fitted on vehicles to eliminate any remaining blind spots on the passenger side
• Moving Off Information Systems (MOIS) fitted to the front of a vehicle to prevent collisions at the frontal blind spot zone when a vehicle moves off from rest
• Audio warnings fitted to all vehicles, including those with left hand drive to ensure all vehicles operating in London have the ability to warn of an intended manoeuvre

TfL reviewed all the feedback received as part of the consultation. In response to issues raised, TfL has decided to modify the proposal to mandate sensors to the trailers of articulated vehicles into a recommendation only.

From 28 October 2024, HGVs over 12 tonnes will be required to have a three-star DVS rating or fit the PSS to operate in Greater London. This will mean that zero to two star rated HGVs will now be required to have additional safety equipment if they do not already meet PSS requirements.

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About Author


Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).