Transport for London (TfL) has revealed that starting from October 2024, HGVs over 12 tonnes (GVW), will be subject to a number of proposed changes. Firstly, they may need a minimum three-star safety rating or be fitted with certain safety systems to be allowed to operate within Greater London. This decision, made by the London Councils Transport and Environment Committee, is an amendment to London's Direct Vision Standard (DVS) based HGV safety permit scheme.
With the proposed updates to the DVS regulations, HGVs will have to meet the three-star DVS rating or be fitted with the Progressive Safe System (PSS), which is an advanced set of safety systems that have been designed after industry consultation and reflect the latest and greatest technology available on the market. The aim of these actions is to improve road safety and lower the number of accidents involving HGVs.
London Councils’ Executive Lead for Climate Change, Transport, and Environment, Mayor Philip Glanville, underscored the commitment to prioritising road user safety and striving towards the Vision Zero objective, which is to eliminate all fatalities on London's roads. The initial rollout of the DVS and safety permit scheme has shown promising outcomes, with vision-related fatal accidents reduced by 50% from 2018 to 2021.
Since the HGV safety permit scheme started in 2019, more than 253,000 safety permits have been granted. This includes almost 6,000 vehicles with a five-star rating and over 151,000 zero-star HGVs that have been upgraded with safety systems. TfL also plans to make user experience improvements to optimise the HGV safety permit application process, including the introduction of a tool for operators to check their vehicles’ permits.
Additionally, TfL is providing a three-month grace period for operators to meet these new standards, and they will consider further extensions in June 2024. To ensure eligibility, operators of existing vehicles with zero, one, or two-star ratings must register their vehicles with TfL and provide evidence of an appointment with fitters to install the PSS equipment before January 31, 2025. However, this arrangement does not apply to operators applying for new vehicle safety permits after October 28, 2024.
We’ll say again, currently, these are just proposed changes and we may see further adjustments to these proposals in the coming months.
While the exact requirements of the Progressive Safe System are yet to be finalised, we are monitoring the situation and as soon as we have any other updates, we’ll let you know.
If you have any immediate questions or concerns about the proposed DVS changes, please don't hesitate to reach out to our team. We are always here for you.