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New van scheme highlights ‘huge safety deficit’

The most recent results from the ‘world’s only Commercial Van Safety Rating programme’ show that some manufacturers have reacted positively to calls for improved van safety.

Launched in 2021 by Euro NCAP and Thatcham Research, the Commercial Van Safety Rating Programme has recently unveiled its latest findings for 2022.

Thatcham Research says the popularity of home deliveries is accelerating the continued surge in new van registrations, with the percentage sales increase of new vans five times higher than that for new cars in 2021.

However, Thatcham says with the fitment and performance of active safety technology on vans ‘lagging way behind passenger cars’, there is a ‘huge safety deficit’ which they are trying to address through the new rating scheme.

The Commercial Van Safety Rating Programme assesses the safety-critical equipment on new vans, with scores based on the fitment rate and performance of active safety and anti-collision technology. Under the scheme, vans are awarded either a ‘Platinum’, ‘Gold’, ‘Silver’, ‘Bronze’ or ‘Not Recommended’ rating.

Thatcham says it is a ‘chilling fact’ that per mile travelled, vans and light commercial vehicles are involved in more deaths of other road users than any other vehicle type. Fitting robust Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) is described as ‘key to achieving a future where vans give other road users the protection they deserve’.

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