The Direct Vision Standard (DVS) is the first legislation of its kind. All goods vehicles over 12 tonnes require a permit to drive into Greater London, including vehicles from outside of the UK. If the vehicle falls short of the required Direct Vision Standard rating, operators will need to fit extra safety devices to comply.
Enforced by Transport for London (TfL), the legislation is based on a ‘star rating’ indicating how much a driver can see from the cab in relation to other road users.
The vehicle manufacturer will issue a star rating for your vehicle. This rating (0-5) is based on how the vehicle left the production line and will not take into account any aftermarket safety systems that have been fitted.
HGVs that do not meet the minimum requirement of 1 star (3 stars from October 2024) need to comply with the Progressive Safe System (PSS) which requires the installation of extra devices for indirect vision (similar to FORS & CLOCS specifications) to alert drivers to vulnerable road users who are in a vehicle’s blind spot. Complying with the DVS Safe System will not alter the vehicle’s star rating but will permit you to drive into Greater London.
The Direct Vision Standard enforcement zone covers all of Greater London.
Our Direct Vision Standard (DVS) map below outlines the area of London where the regulation is in force and where permits are compulsory. Don’t forget this will apply to all vehicles weighing more than 12 tonnes, whether they are from the UK or travelling into London from overseas.
The duration of the HGV Safety Permit depends on whether the vehicle meets the minimum DVS requirements or if it was granted subject to the DVS Safe System:
Find out more information on how to apply for a DVS permit.
The scheme will be implemented by a decriminalised Traffic Regulation Order, meaning a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) can be issued. Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras will detect a vehicle which will be checked with TfL’s permit database. Operators/hauliers without a permit may be issued a PCN of £550 and £130 for the driver, even if the vehicle is 5 star rated, every time the vehicle enters Greater London.
The permit is free of charge and there is no requirement to display anything in the vehicle. To apply for a permit you need access to the TfL online application form which you can find here: https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/dvs-safety-permit-application/
All HGVs need a star rating which can only be obtained by contacting the manufacturer. There is no published list available. The rating (0-5) will be based on how the vehicle left the production line and will not take into account any aftermarket safety systems that have been fitted.
To obtain a star rating you will need the VIN number of the HGV.
Vehicles which are 0 star rated must comply with the DVS Safe System. From October 2024, all vehicles that are 0, 1 and 2 star rated must comply with the updated DVS Progressive Safe System, which requires the fitting of extra devices. Proof of installation must be supplied to TfL when you apply for your permit. It is also worth noting that if the vehicle is required on certain sites, the FORS and CLOCS specification may be enforced.
HGVs that are 1-5 star rated will automatically be eligible for a permit until October 2024, but will still need to apply.
Vehicle operators need to contact their vehicle manufacturer to find out what their DVS star rating is. There is currently no published list available. Operators will need the VIN number of the HGV to hand.
If the vehicle has 0 stars the operator will need to meet the requirements of the DVS Safe System to be eligible for the permit. From October 2024, all vehicles rated 0, 1 and 2 stars will need to comply with the DVS Progressive Safe System, which requires vehicles to be fitted with certain devices. A full breakdown of the devices required to meet these conditions is below.
If you are unsure what your DVS star rating is or whether you comply, Brigade offers a free DVS star rating service to obtain that information for you.
Since DVS was introduced, all 0 rated vehicles have had to comply with the DVS Safe System in order to qualify for a permit. However, from October 2024 this will be changing. All vehicles rated 0, 1 and 2 stars will now need to comply and update their vehicles with the new DVS Progressive Safe System requirements.
What are the current requirements for the DVS Safe System?
If your vehicle is 0 star rated, you must comply with the requirements of the DVS Safe System. This is a series of vehicle safety measures which aim to improve the overall safety of the HGV and aid indirect vision. Complying with the DVS Safe System will not alter a vehicle’s star rating, but it will permit it to be driven in Greater London.
Here at Brigade, we have created a specially compiled DVS Safe System kit to help streamline the process for companies. These kits, which come in two different types (one for rigid vehicles and one for articulated vehicles) include side cameras, ultrasonic sensors for the near side of the vehicle and a warning alarm, which is activated when the vehicle is turning. Both kits are compliant with the Direct Vision Standard as well as all relevant regional laws across the EU, meaning fleet operators can be confident that the systems will meet all necessary legal requirements.
The following devices are required to comply with the current DVS Safe System:
Current proposals are suggesting that three major changes are made to the current DVS Safe System. These include:
Brigade Electronics has a range of products to help operators meet the requirements of various specifications including the safe system for the Direct Vision Standard (DVS). Brigade’s team of experts works closely with road safety associations and charities to provide the best and most up-to-date advice. Interpreting various specifications and understanding the terminology can be a minefield for operators. For example, references to ‘shall’, ‘should’ and ‘may’ in the Direct Vision Standard depict whether a requirement is mandatory, recommended or permitted and transport managers can be left confused.
Brigade has provided advice to many OEM and OES suppliers and continues to work with the aftermarket to make sure that vehicles are compliant. In this role, Brigade also ensures products are fitted to maximise their safety potential.
For a free no obligation consultation on the Direct Vision Standard, please contact us for an appointment.
‘For left hand drive vehicles, mirrors, cameras and sensors should be fitted appropriately to account for the off-side blind spot.
For left hand drive vehicles, the audible vehicle manoeuvring warning shall be fitted to audibly warn vulnerable road users when a vehicle is turning right.’
‘A fully operational camera monitoring system fitted to the nearside of the vehicle.’
‘A sensor system that alerts the driver to the presence of a vulnerable road user fitted to the nearside of the vehicle.’
Sensors on rigid vehicles should ensure coverage size metres down the nearside or one metre from the rear of the vehicle, whichever is smaller. Sensors should not activate in relation to roadside furniture or stationary vehicles. In the case of tractor units, these should be suitably positioned to provide sufficient coverage, but preventing activation solely on articulation of the trailer.
‘Audible vehicle manoeuvring warning to warn vulnerable road users when a vehicle is turning left.’
‘The device should have a manual on/off switch for use between the hours of 11:30pm – 7am.’
TCO-47-01 Latched Cut-out Switch for speaking alarm (recommended).