Posted: February 2020
Our roads have never been so busy. Not only are there 32 million cars currently using UK roads, the increased use of internet deliveries has also contributed with vans making up 16% of all traffic while HGV traffic is expected to increase by 12% by 2050.
Spare a thought then for the learner HGV driver who now has to absorb these additional pressures before being eligible to operate on the road.
Learning to drive an HGV takes an average of six to eight weeks, which is not surprising given the very specific challenges of the role. After passing a theory test, candidates have to demonstrate that they can drive the vehicle professionally and will be tested on skills including selecting the correct gear for the right speed, using brakes to slow the vehicle as opposed to gears, and checking mirrors and blind spots before moving away from a stationary position.
Here at Brigade, we’ve been helping businesses teach HGV learners using our tried-and-tested vehicle safety products. These are proving invaluable, especially as a number of safety initiatives are in the process of being introduced to try to prevent road injuries and fatalities. London’s Direct Vision Standard (DVS), for example, is an initiative requiring some HGVs to install all-round vision cameras, such as our Backeye360 which, unlike mirrors, eliminate all blind spots.
Backeye360 does away with cumbersome mirrors in favour of 360 degree cameras, which feed into a single monitor inside the HGV cab. It means the driver can see everything outside his vehicle, including cyclists and pedestrians who might otherwise be in a blind spot position.
It’s essential that learners are taught how to use these systems as more and more fleets adopt this new technology.
Another of our products that’s useful for new HGV drivers is our Ultrasonic Obstacle Detection sensor system. This clever technology minimises both vehicle damage and collisions with pedestrians, cyclists or objects and is perfect for road-going commercial vehicles operating in confined spaces or manoeuvring at low speed.
Our mission at Brigade is to make our roads safer for eveyone and we’re passionate about our growing range of safety products. We work with international, multi-vehicle fleets as well as small to medium businesses. We’re always happy to offer friendly advice so do get in touch with us.