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Is it time to regulate 3.5t vans with tachographs?

With over 4.3 million licensed 3.5t vans compared to around 600,000 licensed HGV’s on our roads is it time for van drivers to be regulated in the same way as Large Goods Vehicles and Passenger Carrying Vehicles?

Since 2006 van traffic has grown faster than any other vehicle type and continues to do so with online shopping and unrelenting consumer demand for home delivery.

With driver shortages, rising demand and low pay some drivers may be driving excessive hours to top up their income with overtime. Some unscrupulous employers may even pressurise drivers to work longer so they can fulfil demand for their services.

Drivers’ hours are regulated with tachographs for LGVs to ensure there is fair competition between operators and to help keep everyone safe on our roads by recording drivers’ hours. It begs the question why 3.5t vans are not party to the same rules.

There is clear evidence to suggest tougher regulations need to be in place. The MOT pass rate for the 3.5ton sector is only 65%. In 2018, there were 25,484 seriously injured casualties in reported road traffic accidents involving 3.5t vans. How many of these could have been avoided if the 3.5t van driver was restricted to the same drivers’ hours as an HGV driver.

For more information see the petition to the DVSA on www.change.org.

For help and advice in managing your drivers hours, see SmartAnalysis, the UK’s leading tachograph analysis and reporting solution for fleets of all sizes.

Posted on: 06.12.2019

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