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Vosa’s van focus

By: Dave Robbins
25 October 2013

There are 32m vans used by businesses across the UK. They’re an essential element in final mile deliveries for thousands of businesses. But when it comes to safety checks, unlike their large good vehicle cousins (which they outnumber seven times), the van gets away lightly.

That’s probably why, according to figures from Vosa, 50% of vans fail their annual MOT. Data from their roadside checks shows that on average Vosa stop nearly 11,000 vans every year; out of that number, 63% had serious mechanical defects.

Perhaps even more worryingly, in a survey of over 800 van drivers by TomTom Business Solutions, 59% said they were more likely to take risks when driving their work vehicles rather than their own.  75% admitted to speeding in their work vehicles.

All of which is cause for concern and the reason why Vosa is launching a best practice guide for commercial vans. The guide includes vehicle and driver checklists as well as a suggested van walk-around check. The guide has the support of the Road Haulage Association (RHA), Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the British Vehicle Licensing and Leasing Association.

“Unfortunately many light goods vehicle and their drivers are not as safe as they should be,” says Senior Traffic Commissioner, Beverley Bell. “It’s vital that all operators of CVs – whether under or over 3.5 tonnes – ensure their vehicles are roadworthy and that their drivers are not only complying with the law, but also professionally trained.” 

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