Members of the European Parliament have voted today in the plenary to support the manufacture of safer lorry cabs under amendments made to Directive 96/53 on the maximum Weights and Dimensions of lorries.
The legislation will allow extra length to be used in the manufacture of lorry cabs as long as they conform to aerodynamic and safer specifications, with a view to this becoming mandatory for all new cabs.
Examples of safety improvements include bigger windscreens for the front and sides of lorries; deflecting ‘round nose’ to throw cyclists to the side – as happens with cars – rather than sucking them under the wheels, as happens currently; and ‘crumple zones’ or shock absorbers.
Ceri Woolsgrove, the Road Safety policy officer for the European Cyclists’ Federation, said:
“This is an excellent opportunity to make lorries safer, especially with regards to direct vision, in other words what the driver can actually see around the cab. We call upon the Member States in the Council to back this approach by the European Parliament to make these relatively dangerous vehicles safer for those it shares the roads with."
The ban on 25 metre ‘Megatrucks’ being allowed to cross borders was also upheld.