Department for Transport
Trailer safety report
Statement on the publication of a report into trailer safety as required by the Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Act 2018.
Colleagues across the House will be aware that towing safety is an issue of widespread interest and concern, particularly ahead of the key summer caravanning season. In that context, I am pleased to announce to the House the publication of a report into trailer safety. This sets out the government’s position as required by the Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Act 2018.
This country has one of the best road safety records in the world, but every death and injury is a tragedy for the families involved. Ministerial colleagues and department officials have heard directly from families of those affected by fatal trailer incidents. I pay tribute to all those, including the parents of Freddie Hussey, and of Harry Christian-Allan, who have sought to improve trailer safety following such terrible bereavements. I also pay tribute to Members across the House, such as the Hon. Member for Bristol South, who have taken action in this area, such as the recently-convened All-Party Parliamentary Group on Trailer and Towing Safety.
This report has helped consolidate and develop the evidence base related to trailers. It is clear, including from roadside checks by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) undertaken for this report, that many light trailers are used on public roads in a defective state. A focus must be maintained on driving up the safety of these trailers. However, only in a relatively few cases do vehicle defects contribute to serious incidents. Trailer-related incidents share some characteristics with the wider light vehicle fleet, including that human error is a far more prevalent reason for incidents. On the basis of the information set out in this report, the government is therefore not extending current vehicle testing or registration requirements in relation to trailers.
However, as the report highlights, there is further work in this area which the government will take forward. There is more information to consider and this report proposes some future steps, including additional trailer checks to be carried out by DVSA. This will build the evidence base further. A number of non-regulatory and other regulatory levers, including previous changes in driving licence entitlements now spreading through the motoring public, will also have an effect.
This report is an important milestone and is not itself an endpoint. I look forward to working together with all parties to ensure that momentum is maintained in this area, and that trailer safety continues to improve.
Latest News from
Department for Transport
City of Derry Airport and London flights to strengthen ties across the UK23/08/2019 16:05:00
Air route will boost trade and travel opportunities and secure jobs in Derry-Londonderry
Revised road closure guidance to boost children's outdoor play23/08/2019 14:05:00
Easier process to create ‘play streets’ for community events.
Government announces independent review into HS2 programme22/08/2019 14:20:00
Terms of reference and timetable for independent review of HS2 released.
West Coast marks new partnership model for rail14/08/2019 12:10:00
New trains, more seats, simplified fares and more frequent services on the West Coast Main Line.
Over one million people to save hundreds, as new 16-17 Saver launches, cutting cost of rail travel for teenagers14/08/2019 11:10:00
New 16-17 Saver guarantees half-price rail travel for young people.
Government doubles funding for on-street electric car charging12/08/2019 11:05:00
Additional £2.5 million for chargepoints on residential streets.
Activation of Bellwin Scheme and cash boost for Whaley Bridge12/08/2019 10:26:00
Local communities and businesses impacted by last week’s heavy rain and flooding will have access to £5.25m to support their recovery.
Ministers visit Dover to ensure UK ports are ready for Brexit08/08/2019 16:07:00
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Home Secretary and Transport Secretary visit port to see Brexit preparations.