Road Safety News

Film highlights van driver dangers

Thursday 14th August 2014

The insurance giant AXA has produced a short online film which highlights some of the specific road safety issues and other threats experienced by van drivers.

AXA says the film is a follow up to a report focusing on van drivers, which was published earlier this year by Road Safety Analysis in partnership with AXA Business Insurance.

The three-minute film, titled ‘A Day in the Life of the Unluckiest Van’, uses a humorous approach to highlight dangers including tailgating, reversing and tiredness.

The film explains that van drivers are 47% more likely to crash as a result of tailgating, 142% more likely to crash while reversing, and 23% more likely to crash as a result of driving while tired.



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The van is the workhorse and cart of modern society. It carries goods and other chattels and wares. It becomes the office and place of employment for many a trader or self employed service provider ie. plumber, electrician, carpenter etc.

As such it doesn't register on the social scale. It's a vehicle of business and businesses. It is below the status of a socially acceptable form of personal transport.
bob craven Lancs

Agree (2) | Disagree (0)

The type of vehicle we drive does have a bearing on how we drive and I'm not aware of any research that has been done on this. A driver's attitude can be influenced by the vehicle itself i.e. its image and how easy and undemanding it may be to drive. A relaxed driver purring along at a sedate pace in a Rolls or other luxury car I'm sure has a different mindset from a delivery driver in a hurry in his noisy van - I think the latter is going to be more accident-prone than the former.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

Agree (1) | Disagree (1)

Re-Bob's suggestion of an automatic beeper when reversing - I think it should be compulsory on all vehicles. I have one on my car - a simple direct replacememt for the standard bulb - approx. £4 from Amazon!
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

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There is to my mind a built in design fault of not only van mirrors, but all external mirrors on all vehicles. This fault has been with us for some considerable time and has been allowed to flourish without being made public or apparent to the powers that be, or indeed RSOs or other government agencies who could have stepped in and demanded a safer system.

When an external rear view mirror actually reflects the correct distance behind a vehicle then vans and other vehicles will be able to see just how close they are to traffic they have just overtaken, or before they pull out on traffic into, say, an outside lane or where the tarmac stops and the pavement begins.

As I have suggested before a reversing sensor and perhaps a warning beeper wouldn't go amiss or cost a lot, but would save money in compensation claims for damage or injury. It will pay for itself easily.
bob craven Lancs

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I think the film goes to show you should not play with model vans in the road. AXA may have accessed their data on claims for such vans, but does it compare mile for mile with other drivers? With internet shopping at the level it is, there are more delivery vans on the road than pre-internet shopping. Plus, many drivers are paid on a drop score, or have other deadlines to meet often imposed by clients as well as their controllers.
Derek Reynolds, Salop.

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Lots of problems, but no solutions! How do you stop your catalytic converter getting stolen? If it is so difficult to reverse a van safely then why aren't there better mirrors or reversing cameras fitted? The list of problems goes on, but the poor van driver is left none the wiser as to what to do to avoid these situations.
Duncan MacKillop, Startford on Avon

Agree (3) | Disagree (1)

Somewhat comedic but maybe it gets its message across but where is it going to? Is it being sent to its target audience, who is its target audience?

The first one about reversing shows a van being reversed into and surely that's not right? The mirrors on which the driver relies are significantly wrong in correctly showing the distance of anything behind, be that another vehicle or a stationary object. They should all be fitted with reverse warning devices (very cheaply) or rear view cameras. The problem with their external mirrors can also be seen with them cutting in after overtaking.

Tailgating is obvious as they feel that as they are seated higher up they can see further down the road over the roof of the car in front. That they are in a better position to react should anything happen.... and they are proved to me mistaken ... often.
bob craven Lancs

Agree (3) | Disagree (0)