Articles Tagged ‘Modern Vehicles - Brake the road safety charity’

Brake welcomes MEPs' calls for improved car safety standards

News from Brake
Thursday, 12 October 2017
news@brake.org.uk

The European Parliament’s Transport Committee has demanded that new cars be fitted with a range of life-saving technologies as standard, including automated emergency braking systems, intelligent speed assistance and seatbelt reminders in all seats.

In a non-binding resolution responding to a report by the European Commission, ‘Saving Lives: Boosting Car Safety in the EU’, adopted today in Brussels, the committee said that “more effective measures” are needed to reach a goal of “no fatalities”.

Last year, the European Commission published a list of 19 safety technologies that it is considering making mandatory. Brake recently led a coalition of NGOs and industry bodies in writing to UK Roads Minister, Jesse Norman MP, urging the Department for Transport to support these measures and champion continued improvements under UK legislation following Brexit.

The technologies under consideration for new cars include automated emergency braking systems (AEBS) and intelligent speed assistance (ISA) – an overridable system for helping drivers keep within the speed limit – as well as updates to crash-testing requirements to protect vehicle occupants and people outside vehicles. The EC is also considering measures specifically for lorries, to protect people on foot and bicycles, including improvements to lorry drivers’ direct vision.

The Transport Committee has called for new legislation to be proposed by the European Commission no later than the first quarter of next year.

Commenting on today's resolution, Jason Wakeford, Director of Campaigns for Brake, the road safety charity, said: "Vehicle safety standards were last updated in 2009 and, in light of significant advances in technology since then, improved life-saving safety measures should be fitted to new vehicles as standard.

"Today's resolution from MEPs is warmly welcomed. Recent UK government statistics show that almost 1,800 people were killed in collisions last year, a rise of four per cent from 2015 and the highest annual total since 2011. Improved minimum standards for new vehicles is essential to reduce deaths and serious injuries on our roads.

"We continue to call on the UK government to ensure its voice is heard in Europe, supporting the introduction of all 19 safety measures listed in the EC’s December 2016 report, and ensuring these measures are retained and further developed after Brexit.

"Improved vehicle standards, along with better investigation of the causes of crashes and injuries, are crucial to deliver the 'safe system' approach adopted by Britain, driving towards the ultimate target of zero road deaths."

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About Brake

Brake is a national road safety and sustainable transport charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies.

We do this through national campaignscommunity educationservices for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.

Follow Brake on TwitterFacebook, or The Brake Blog.

Road crashes are not accidents; they are devastating and preventable events, not chance mishaps. Calling them accidents undermines work to make roads safer, and can cause insult to families whose lives have been torn apart by needless casualties.

Hiring a vehicle with 3 point seat belts

Always hire a vehicle that is modern and has 3-point seat belts that are retractable, undamaged, and work, and provide space for the correct fitting of child restraints (seats and booster seats). In other words, seat belts which are just like those in a modern car.

It is important that you explain to the vehicle provider, when booking, that you will not accept any vehicle that has seat belts that are jammed, don’t retract, or which are frayed or look in any other way damaged: it would be wise to put this in writing. When your vehicle arrives you should check all seat belts.

Do NOT hire a vehicle that has no seat belts or only lap belts. Lap belts are wholly inadequate. Small children are extremely delicate and their bodies are not fully formed. Restrained by only a lap belt, in a serious crash a small child’s body would bend to form a U shape and then whiplash backwards and forwards. These movements can cause death, tetraplegia and critical injuries to internal organs. Coaches and minibuses with 3 point belts are widely available, so there is no excuse for using a vehicle with only lap belts. (In addition, many child seats cannot be fitted only with a lap belt.)

There is research evidence that using a three point belt and child seat reduces the risk of injury by 57% compared with using a lap belt on a child. The below two links take you to research demonstrating this:

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety research on child restraints with the University of Philidelphia 

National Transport Safety Board study on performance of child restraints

Industry and NGOs call for urgent UK action on vehicle safety standards

News from Brake
Monday 14 August, 2017
news@brake.org.uk

A coalition of industry groups and NGOs have called on the UK Government to pledge its support for European Commission plans to improve new vehicle safety standards.

In a joint letter and briefing to Roads Minister Jesse Norman MP, Brake, the Association of Car Fleet Operators, Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation, European Transport Safety Council, Living Streets, the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety and RoadPeace say improved minimum vehicle safety standards are needed to reduce deaths and serious injuries on UK roads.

Last year the European Commission published a list of 19 safety technologies which it is considering to make mandatory. In its letter, the group urges the Minister to support these measures and champion continued improvements under UK legislation following Brexit.

The technologies under consideration for new cars include Automated Emergency Braking, Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA), an overridable system for helping drivers stick to speed limits, as well as updates to crash testing requirements to protect occupants and people outside vehicles. The EC is also considering measures specifically for lorries, to protect people and foot and bicycles, including improvements to lorry drivers’ direct vision (what they can see out their windows).

Vehicle standards were last updated in 2009 and significant advances in vehicle technology, which have taken place since then, "make it prudent to raise the bar and implement further cost effective life-saving safety measures as standard," the group says.

The coalition concludes that improved vehicle safety standards are "crucial to ensure the effective delivery of the 'safe system' approach adopted by Britain, driving towards the ultimate target of zero road deaths and serious injuries."

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About Brake

Brake is a national road safety and sustainable transport charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies.

We do this through national campaignscommunity educationservices for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.

Follow Brake on TwitterFacebook, or The Brake Blog.

Road crashes are not accidents; they are devastating and preventable events, not chance mishaps. Calling them accidents undermines work to make roads safer, and can cause insult to families whose lives have been torn apart by needless casualties.

Member states back lifesaving vehicle tech

News from Brake
Thursday 29 November
 
EU member states, through the European Council, have today given their backing to a new package of mandatory minimum vehicle standards, as proposed by the European Commission [1].
 
If the package is agreed with the European Parliament, the measures will see the mandatory fitment of advanced driver assistance systems including Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) and Lane Keep Assist (LKA), in all new cars, as well as the introduction of further safety measures including safer car and lorry fronts [2].
 
Introduced in full, it has been evaluated that this package of measures could save 25,000 lives across the EU over the next 16 years [3].
 
Commenting, Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for Brake, said:
 
This is a momentous day for road safety in Europe with support given to measures which could prevent 25,000 lives being lost on the road over the next 16 years. Member states have played their part, backing the mandatory fitting of vehicle technologies which will make roads safer for everyone for generations to come. Now its the European Parliament’s turn to step up and make this vision a reality.
 
“Road safety has stagnated in the UK in recent years, but the rollout of lifesaving vehicle technologies, such as Autonomous Emergency Braking and Intelligent Speed Assistance, can deliver the next-step change in safety improvement. The UK government must seize this opportunity and continue its support of these vital measures, regardless of the Brexit outcome.
 
"There is huge public backing for action to improve the safety of vehicles, with 9 in 10 drivers in a Brake and Direct Line survey agreeing that all new cars should be fitted with the latest lifesaving safety features as standard. With the potential for 25,000 lives to be saved over the next 16 years, it is imperative that both the EU and UK government support these measures and help make our roads safer for all.”
 
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Notes to editors:
The draft regulation updates existing rules on car safety contained in the General Safety Regulation (EC) 661/2009, the Pedestrian Safety Regulation (EC) 78/2009 and the Hydrogen Safety Regulation (EC) 79/2009.
 
[2] European Transport Safety Council briefing on the Third Mobility Package - https://etsc.eu/briefing-eu-mobility-package-iii-including-new-vehicle-safety-standards/
 
[3] TRL report which identifies that the proposed vehicle safety measures could prevent 24,794 deaths across all vehicle categories between 2022 and 2037. https://publications.europa.eu/en/publication-detail/-/publication/ed4aff17-49c5-11e8-be1d-01aa75ed71a1/language-en
 
[4] The final proposals will now need to be agreed in negotiations between the EU institutions after formal votes in the European Parliament’s Internal Market (IMCO) and Transport (TRAN) committees, expected to take place early next year.
 
 
About Brake
Brake is a national road safety and sustainable transport charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies.
We do this through national campaignscommunity educationservices for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.
Follow Brake on TwitterFacebook, or The Brake Blog.
 
Road crashes are not accidents; they are devastating and preventable events, not chance mishaps. Calling them accidents undermines work to make roads safer, and can cause insult to families whose lives have been torn apart by needless casualties.

Modern vehicles

Campaigning to place people and the planet at the heart of vehicle modernisation

The Modern Vehicles campaign embraces unstoppable developments in vehicle technology, that can save both lives and the planet, and calls on developments to be implemented in line with Brake's vision of safe, sustainable, healthy and fair transport.

What are we calling for?

  1. A raising of the bar of safety regulation on new vehicles, to prevent crashes and mitigate their outcomes.  
  2. Increased efforts by government and infrastructure providers to enable purchase and convenient refuelling of ultra-low emission vehicles. 
  3. Support and incentives for increased safe and green vehicle purchasing by the public.
  4. Increased safe and green vehicle purchasing choices by companies and organisations operating fleets. 
  5. Ensuring that the implementation of automated, connected vehicles within the UK are safe, sustainable, healthy and fair for all. This includes ensuring fair space and segregated routes for people on foot and bicycles. 

fc1 learn more

Modern Vehicles: Learn More

Read about the campaign to modernise our wheels, and follow the links to learn more.

Crash prevention (Active safety measures)

Some vehicles on Britain's roads are already partially-automated thanks to sensor technology using cameras, radar and lasers. Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) can give warnings, or take action for a driver; for example automatically apply brakes in an emergency. Technology can control vehicles within posted speed limits or warn drivers they are exceeding a limit. Vehicles can be fitted with systems that identify driver impairment; for example, alcohol and drowsiness detection systems. Mirror and camera systems can provide a greater range of vision for drivers; of particular benefit in the largest vehicles. While a few of these systems are legally required, many are not as yet. Go to our ADAS Fact Check. and our Alcohol and Distraction Detection Systems Fact Check

Crash protection (Passive safety measures)

It is always better to prevent a crash but crash protection systems (passive safety measures) save lives and more needs to be done to ensure passive safety developments are prioritised on vehicles from air bags that protect occupants to softer vehicle exteriors to mitigate injury to vulnerable road users. Read our fact check on passive safety measures for occupant safety, our fact check on passive safety measures on cars for the safety of vulnerable road users including people on foot and bicycles, and our Seat Belt Reminders Fact Check

EC review of vehicle safety regulations

The EC is currently revising its regulations governing minimum standards for active and passive safety measures, which affects standards of cars sold in the UK. Go to our EU Vehicle Safety Standards Review Fact Check.

Clean revolution: Ultra Low-Emission Vehicles (ULEVs)

Clean vehicles are a crucial part of cleaning up our country. Estimates place transport as causing up to a quarter of carbon emissions contributing to global warming, and it is a major cause of poor air quality from NOx and particulates, contributing to tens of thousands of deaths from respiratory conditions. The British government has a vision of every car being ULEV by 2040, and sales of ULEVs are rocketing; it's easier and cheaper to buy an electric ULEV now, thanks to a grant scheme and an increase in charging stations. The government is also encouraging take up of hydrogen fuel-cell powered vehicles, particularly among fleets. But ULEVs still make up a tiny fraction of vehicles on Britain's roads (just over 1%).  Read our Climate Change and Air Pollution Fact Check. Read our fact check on Diesel Cars and NOx emissions

Driverless vehicles

The future's arriving fast. Vehicles with 'auto-pilot' functions are already on our roads. Highly-automated vehicles (requiring a driver to step in only for complex driving tasks) and fully-automated vehicles (entirely driverless), ranging from small city 'pods' to large trucks on motorways, are already in circulation as prototypes and could be on Britain's roads before 2020 and replace other vehicles by 2030. In 2017, the government is aiming to change Britain's legislative framework to allow driverless vehicles. In 2017, trials will also start on Britain's public roads of fully-automated and highly-automated vehicles, "connected" through wireless technology (meaning they receive information about each other and their wider environment including road information). Trials will include platooning trucks; a convoy of trucks connected to a lead vehicle. Driverless vehicles are a reality; the challenge is to regulate them in ways that are safe, sustainable, healthy and fair for everyone.  Read our Driverless Vehicles Fact Check and Brake's position on them.