In the UK, new Government proposals covering electric and other alternatively fuelled commercial vehicles could raise risk management questions for fleets, says Arval.
The Department of Transport has announced proposals that could increase the ceiling for driving a commercial vehicle on a standard Category B licence from the current 3.5 tonnes to 4.25 tonnes if they are powered by a range of fuels classified as more environmentally friendly.
Eddie Parker, LCV consultant at Arval, explained that the move was designed to allow more widespread adoption of AV commercial vehicles, which tend to be heavier than their diesel or petrol powered equivalents, while preserving payload capacity.
He said: “It is easy to see the thinking behind this, and moves to improve air quality from CV operation should be applauded, but it does also raise risk management questions for drivers and fleets. Currently, if you want to drive a vehicle above 3.5 tonnes, you have to gain a full C1 licence for up to 7.5 tonnes, which place a whole series of additional obligations on drivers and operators. The question facing fleets is whether they feel it is responsible to place drivers with standard “car” licences into a vehicle with a mass that has previously been seen as requiring specialised training, and into something that is three-quarters of a tonne heavier and twice as heavy as the largest cars”.
(Image: Jersey Van Sales)