A simple Google news search on ‘HGV’ prompts dozens of stories on HGV Accidents and other risky things about heavy goods vehicles on the results pages. Although HGV accidents aren’t as frequent as the media tries to put it, the dramatic nature of how they happen is what gives them such attention. Heavy goods vehicles are among the safest vehicles on the road, thanks to the rigorous HGV training and numerous safety controls and checks put in place to make them safe. This article outlines some of the main safety features in HGVs that contribute to keeping everyone on the road safe and to prevent accidents.
Speed governors are very common in HGVs today. These gadgets work diligently to prevent the driver cruising at speeds that would be dangerous to both the truck and other road users. Most HGV manufacturers have the speed limiters inside the engine as a way to ensure the truck’s speed is monitored and capped at set speeds always. Most HGVs have their top speeds set at 70 MPH. The set speed allows the driver to have total control of the truck, keep a safe braking distance, etc. In addition to this, the set speed limit is indicated on the back of the truck to help let other drivers know what speeds the truck could be doing.
Enforced Driving Time Limits
Tiredness from driving for extended periods of time is one of the leading causes of road accidents today. Statistics show that fatigue kills more drivers per year than drugs, alcohol and bad weather combined. Interestingly enough, most of these victims are highly experienced, professional drivers. Regulations have, therefore, been set detailing how long a driver is allowed to sit at the wheel. These regulations come in single day shifts extending up to 2 weeks. HGV drivers must not drive for more than:
- 10 hours twice a week, or 9 hours a day
- 56 hours within a span of 7 days
- 90 hours within 14 days
HGVs have a tracking feature, the tachograph that records the drivers’ driving time as well as time their breaks. The recorded data is stored whereby the employer can track and monitor the drivers’ performances. Thanks to this feature, most HGV drivers remain fit to drive and are always alert on the road.
HGVs are also fitted with extra safety features and technologies meant to keep drivers safe. Some of the standard security safety features and technologies installed in most HGVs include:
- Reversing cameras
- Rear view cameras
- Vehicle radars
- Digital video recorders (DVRs)
- GPS tracking
- Auto braking systems
- RFID technology
- Mirror monitors
- Air bags
- General vehicle safety equipment
All these gadgets assist HGV drivers to drive safely, particularly when driving in the right lane, cyclist collisions, reversing accidents, sideswipes on motorways, as well reduce cases of stolen goods from the cabin.
In addition to the standard driving courses, HGV drivers receive enhanced driving techniques to enable them to handle such heavy trucks, expertly. In addition to this, most HGV drivers have to work under an experienced truck driver for some time before they can be allowed to drive on their own. With such training, drivers will be able to prevent and avoid accidents, thus contribute to making roads in England safer.