Sponsored: All you need to know about the Direct Vision Standard coming into effect this year


The Direct Vision Standard (DVS) is the first legislation of its kind. From 26 October  2020, ALL goods vehicles over 12 tonnes will require a permit to drive into Greater London, including vehicles from outside the UK.

Enforced by Transport for London (TfL), the legislation is based on a ‘star rating’ indicating how much a driver can see from the cab in relation to other road users.

The vehicle manufacturer will issue a star rating for your vehicle. This rating (0-5) is based on how the vehicle left the production line and will not take into account any aftermarket safety systems that have been fitted.

HGVs that do not meet the minimum requirement of one star need to comply with the Safe System which requires the installation of extra devices for indirect vision (similar to FORS & CLOCS specifications). Complying with the Safe System will not alter the vehicle’s star rating but will permit you to drive into Greater London.

By 2024 DVS minimum star requirements increase to three stars.

Vehicles that do not meet the minimum requirement of one star or those that have not complied with the Safe System will be banned from entering Greater London from 26th October 2020.

SDC launches its Freespan open-aperture trailer in the UK

SDC has expanded its UK product line-up with the launch of Freespan, a curtain-sided semi trailer with a fully clear side aperture.

Although Freespan has previously been sold in Ireland, this is the first time it has been offered to UK operators.

SDC had previously provided a Freespan-type curtainsider in conjunction with Lawrence David. However this arrangement came to an end when Polish manufacturer Wielton purchased a 75% stake in Lawrence David, and its chassis are now being imported from Poland for its pillarless model.

The Freespan utilises SDC’s tried and tested robotically welded chassis, 150,000 of which have been built in the last 40 years. It also features its Easy-roll curtain technology, with its low-friction track system. 

SDC’s chief operating officer Paul Bratton said: “We are delighted to finally release the Freespan in the UK after years of building it solely for the Irish market, providing a reliable solution for customers who require a side loading operation.”

Read the full story in this week’s Commercial Motor (on sale 9 January).