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Companies across Britain implement Crossrail lorry safety requirements

By Krista Eleftheriou

Companies across Britain implement Crossrail lorry safety requirements
  • Thousands of heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) now compliant with Crossrail lorry safety requirements
  • Benefits of safer lorries and drivers extend throughout the UK as compliant HGVs are now operating in the construction industry supply chain
  • Over 4,700 professional drivers have completed Crossrail’s one day intensive driver training course
  • Crossrail hosts cycle safety event at Marble Arch today allowing cyclists to take to the driver’s seat.

Crossrail’s rigorous safety requirements for any HGV working on the project is leading to widespread change in the UK haulage industry as vehicles are upgraded with new safety equipment to alert drivers to vulnerable road users.

Crossrail’s contract requirements have enabled thousands of HGVs working on the project to become safer by fitting safety equipment added to each vehicle at an average cost of around £1,250.

It comes as Crossrail provides cyclists with a chance to take to a lorry driver’s seat at Marble Arch today. The Exchanging Places event is one of a series of joint Crossrail and police road safety initiatives being held on London roads and in schools, designed to give cyclists an understanding of blind spots faced by HGV drivers.

The Mayor of London’s recently published ‘Vision for cycling in London’ details how Crossrail, alongside the GLA and Transport for London (TfL) is using its supply chain contracts to ensure companies are adopting these safety measures. More widely, TfL is working to make all construction vehicles across London safer and cleaner for all. Earlier this week, a Cycle Safety Toolkit for fleet operators was published by TfL, providing practical advice to help them further minimise the risk of collisions between vehicles and vulnerable road users on the Capital’s roads.

Crossrail requires all HGVs delivering to its worksites to have cycle safety equipment and for regular drivers to undergo a one day intensive training course regarding vulnerable road users. Lorries are inspected when arriving at site to ensure the required safety equipment is fitted and in working order.

Crossrail requirements include that HGVs are fitted with Fresnel lenses or cameras, blind spot detection equipment which warns the driver when a cyclist is in the near-side blind spot and under-run guards to prevent cyclists from coming into contact with lorry wheels. Vehicles must also carry warning signs to alert cyclists and pedestrians of the risks they face by getting too close to HGVs.

Crossrail requires inspections of all vehicles when they arrive at site to ensure that the required safety equipment is working. Checks are made to ensure that left turn alarms are working as well as blind spot detection systems

Crossrail Chief Executive Andrew Wolstenholme said: “Crossrail requires all vehicles working on the project to have designated safety equipment installed to help protect vulnerable road users. The haulage and construction industry has invested millions in new safety equipment to meet Crossrail’s safety requirements for HGVs. The benefits are not just confined to London as the majority of HGVs delivering to Crossrail sites also deliver to locations in towns and cities across the UK. The impact of this initiative is clearly demonstrated by organisations in both the private and public sectors now adopting these important safety standards.”

TfL Director of Planning, Surface Transport, Ben Plowden said: “Cycling in London has risen by 173 per cent since 2001 and we are working hard to double that figure in the next 10 years. Through the Exchanging Places programme, we can give cyclists and HGV drivers the chance to put themselves in each other’s shoes, focusing on the dangers and risks of collisions between cyclists and HGV drivers.

“Crossrail is also working closely with the MPS, VOSA and ourselves to ensure safety standards are followed by all operators through regular roadside checks and site visits. We want all cyclists to feel safe on our roads, which is why we are pushing for more companies to follow Crossrail’s lead in encouraging cycle specific safety equipment to be fitted to all their contractors’ HGV lorries as standard.”

RoadPeace Chair Cynthia Barlow said: “Many more people are now cycling and walking; it is therefore essential that lorry owners and drivers do all they can to make themselves as safe as possible when they are in space which is shared with vulnerable road users.  When someone has been killed on the road, what the bereaved family needs most is that what happened has been taken seriously, and appropriate action will be taken to prevent similar incidents in future. Crossrail is to be commended for promoting good practices which reduce the danger posed by lorries in London.”

The required safety measures are part of a programme that Crossrail has implemented to help make roads safer for vulnerable road users in the capital and beyond.

More than 4,700 drivers have now completed Crossrail’s Lorry Driver Training course covering vulnerable road users.

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For further information contact the Crossrail Press Office on 020 3229 9552 or email pressoffice@crossrail.co.uk

Notes to editors:

The contractor requirements concerning HGV safety equipment is contained in works contracts at all levels of the Crossrail supply chain. The costs of fitting the necessary equipment are incurred by the contractor or haulier.

The lorry driver induction training course was developed in consultation with cycling and road safety campaign groups including RoadPeace, London Cycling Campaign (LCC) and Cyclist Touring Club.

Crossrail lorries are required to travel on designated local routes in central London. These designated routes cover both access and exit from sites and are agreed with local authorities under the Crossrail Act.

Crossrail is also working with TfL to ensure all contractors working on the project achieve ‘bronze or higher’ membership of the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS). The scheme encourages safe and sustainable transport operations and each member undergoes a safety inspection and audit.

Crossrail is committed to minimising lorry movements in central London. Excavated material from the construction of Crossrail’s tunnels between Royal Oak and Farringdon is removed by freight train rather than lorry, significantly reducing the level of Crossrail’s lorry movements through the busy streets of London.

TfL has adopted Work Related Road Risk cycle safety requirements in its contracts as piloted by Crossrail. In TfL’s generic requirement, the Crossrail specific driver training has been replaced with the TfL Safe Urban Driving DCPC accredited training with an on-cycle hazard awareness module. The driver training requirement has also been extended from just lorry drivers to additionally include van drivers. TfL also requires contractors to undertake driver licence checks with the DVLA and the TfL WRRR requirements make no exemptions for courier vehicles.

TfL’s WRRR cycle safety requirements have been adopted by all parts of TfL and the London Legacy Development Corporation, are being promoted to all London boroughs for use in their own procurement practices, and are imbedded within the new TfL guidance on Construction Logistics Plans. More information is available on-line at www.fors-online.org.uk and in the TfL guidance documents ‘Improving roads safety through procurement’, ‘Construction Logistics Plan Guidance for planners’ and ‘Construction Logistics Plan Guidance for developers’.

TfL continues to actively engage with local, national and European governments to adopt strict safety standards and have cycle specific safety equipment, including side-bars, blind spot mirrors and detection equipment fitted as standard to reduce the risk of collisions on the capital’s roads.

TfL’s recent independent report into the construction industry highlighted that vehicle manufacturers’ need to develop better lorries for urban use that have far greater visibility from the driver’s cab and a positive dialogue has already begun with the vehicle manufacturing industry to help drive this forward - http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/media/newscentre/archive/27139.aspx

About Crossrail

The total funding envelope available to deliver Crossrail is £14.8bn. The Crossrail route will pass through 37 stations and run 118 km (73 miles) from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km (13 miles) tunnels to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

When Crossrail opens it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10%, supporting regeneration and cutting journey times across the city. Crossrail services are due to commence through central London in 2018.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London. Crossrail is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.