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Testing for HGV drivers is to be changed after a coroner raised concerns about the lack of training over mirrors.
The DVSA said it would add questions to the driving theory test for new drivers of lorries on the topics of class VI mirrors and also incr…

Pensioner’s death prompts change in lorry driver training

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe's family/Norfolk Constabulary

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe’s family/Norfolk Constabulary

Archant

The training of lorry drivers in the UK will be changed after a Norfolk pensioner was run over and killed.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

Dudley Howe was knocked over by a lorry while crossing Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017.

The 82-year-old, who lived in the town, had been walking through stationary, queuing traffic, when the vehicle slowly crept forward and drove over him.

Mr Howe, a retired farmer who bred Ayrshire dairy cows, was killed instantly.

Senior coroner for Norfolk, Jacqueline Lake, later warned of further deaths if HGV driver training was not changed to account for blind spots immediately in front of lorry cabs.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

And now the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has said it will add questions to the theory test for large vehicles, while ensuring training which highlights blind spots is completed at five-year intervals.

Concerns over the adequacy of training were initially raised during the trial of Simon Rayner, from Norwich, who was cleared in January of causing Mr Howe’s death by careless driving.

But Norwich Crown Court heard the lorry’s mirrors had not been properly adjusted and the pensioner could not have been seen from the vehicle’s cab.

The jury sent a note to the judge asking that lorry drivers ensure they have mirrors fitted to show a view of the whole front of the cab, and for it to be made a criminal offence to not do so.

Judge Anthony Bate passed the recommendation to Norfolk’s coroner’s office and, following the conclusion of Mr Howe’s inquest in March, Mrs Lake wrote to the DVSA.

She said: “During the course of the inquest, the evidence revealed matters giving rise to concern. In my opinion there is a risk that future deaths will occur unless action is taken.”

In response, DVSA chief executive Gareth Llewellyn said in a letter that mandatory completion of training every five years would be introduced for drivers to maintain their driver certificate of professional competence (DCPC).

He also pledged to run a social media campaign within the next six months, “highlighting the need for lorry drivers to make sure mirrors are properly adjusted on each journey.”

Changes to training will come into effect this autumn, the DVSA has said.


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Death of Attleborough pensioner Dudley Howe prompts change in lorry driver training

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe's family/Norfolk Constabulary

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe’s family/Norfolk Constabulary

Archant

The training of lorry drivers in the UK will be changed after a Norfolk pensioner was run over and killed.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

Dudley Howe was knocked over by a lorry while crossing Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017.

The 82-year-old, who lived in the town, had been walking through stationary, queuing traffic, when the vehicle slowly crept forward and drove over him.

Mr Howe, a retired farmer who bred Ayrshire dairy cows, was killed instantly.

Senior coroner for Norfolk, Jacqueline Lake, later warned of further deaths if HGV driver training was not changed to account for blind spots immediately in front of lorry cabs.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

And now the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has said it will add questions to the theory test for large vehicles, while ensuring training which highlights blind spots is completed at five-year intervals.

Concerns over the adequacy of training were initially raised during the trial of Simon Rayner, from Norwich, who was cleared in January of causing Mr Howe’s death by careless driving.

But Norwich Crown Court heard the lorry’s mirrors had not been properly adjusted and the pensioner could not have been seen from the vehicle’s cab.

The jury sent a note to the judge asking that lorry drivers ensure they have mirrors fitted to show a view of the whole front of the cab, and for it to be made a criminal offence to not do so.

Judge Anthony Bate passed the recommendation to Norfolk’s coroner’s office and, following the conclusion of Mr Howe’s inquest in March, Mrs Lake wrote to the DVSA.

She said: “During the course of the inquest, the evidence revealed matters giving rise to concern. In my opinion there is a risk that future deaths will occur unless action is taken.”

In response, DVSA chief executive Gareth Llewellyn said in a letter that mandatory completion of training every five years would be introduced for drivers to maintain their driver certificate of professional competence (DCPC).

He also pledged to run a social media campaign within the next six months, “highlighting the need for lorry drivers to make sure mirrors are properly adjusted on each journey.”

Changes to training will come into effect this autumn, the DVSA has said.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Eastern Daily Press. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Coroner raises safety concerns after pensioner killed by lorry

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe's family/Norfolk Constabulary

Dudley Howe was killed after being hit by a lorry on Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017. Picture: Courtesy of Mr Howe’s family/Norfolk Constabulary

Archant

A coroner says the training of lorry drivers should be changed after a pensioner was run over and killed.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

Dudley Howe was knocked over by a lorry while crossing Station Road, Attleborough, in October 2017.

The 82-year-old, who lived in the town, had been walking through stationary, queuing traffic, when the vehicle slowly crept forward and drove over him.

Mr Howe, a retired farmer who bred Ayrshire dairy cows, was killed instantly.

In January, driver Simon Rayner, of Abbot Road, Norwich, was cleared of causing death by careless driving.

Police at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: ArchantPolice at the scene of the crash on Station Road, Attleborough, which killed Dudley Howe in October 2017. Picture: Archant

But Norwich Crown Court heard the lorry’s mirrors had not been properly adjusted, meaning Mr Howe could not have been seen from the vehicle’s cab.

The jury subsequently sent a note to the judge recommending that the laws on the use of mirrors by lorry drivers be toughened.

It asked that lorry drivers should ensure they have mirrors fitted to show a view of the whole front of the cab, and for it to be made a criminal offence to not do so.

At the time, Judge Anthony Bate said he would pass the recommendation to Norfolk’s coroner’s office ahead of Mr Howe’s inquest.

With the inquest concluded on March 25, senior coroner for Norfolk, Jacqueline Lake, has written to the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) highlighting the risk of further deaths.

In her letter, she said: “During the course of the inquest, the evidence revealed matters giving rise to concern. In my opinion there is a risk that future deaths will occur unless action is taken.

“I understand there is nothing to mandate that specific subjects are covered during HGV training, such as the use and positioning of Class VI (cyclops) mirror which shows the area immediately in front of the lorry, which would otherwise be outside the lorry driver’s view.

“Some training is provided in respect of use of such mirrors but there are some industry bodies and operators who deliver training who do not require all drivers to undergo a Safe Urban Driving or Vulnerable Road User Awareness Course.

“In my opinion action should be taken to prevent future deaths and I believe your organisation has the power to take such action.”

The DVSA must issue a response by May 20.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting The Eastern Daily Press. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.