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Van drivers at greater risk of crashing

Wed, 09 Jul 2014

VAN DRIVERS are 50% more likely to be involved in a collision when driving too close to the vehicle in front and a massive 142% more at danger of crashing when reversing.

Drivers of vans are also 43% more at risk of being in an accident even when parked, while performing a U-turn puts them at 39% more likely to be in a collision than other road users. Other areas where van drivers are more at risk is when changing lanes (36%) and on motorways (19%).

However, van drivers are safer when it comes to being in traffic jams and are 20% less likely to be in a collision with another vehicle. They are also less prone at roundabouts (20%), when overtaking (7%) and in town driving (9%). Van drivers are also 23% less likely to be found drink or drug driving.

Tiredness and a lack of training are highlighted as key areas where many van drivers can be caught out compared to other road users.

Richard Owen, of Road Safety Analysis, said: ‘We have to remember that while HGV drivers get rigorous additional training for driving a specialist vehicle, almost anyone can get behind the wheel of a van.

‘Common manoeuvres such as changing lanes, reversing and parking are considerably more demanding in a much larger vehicle. We’ve all been taught to reverse a car; but in a van, visibility is restricted and the dimensions are very different.

By Press Association reporters