Fleet News

Crash protection changes labelled 'appalling'

PLANS to water down rigorous tests designed to make car fronts more 'pedestrian friendly' have been described as 'appalling' by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.

The organisation is concerned that the European Commission could 'backtrack' on proposals to force manufacturers to change the design of car bonnets to provide pedestrians hit by cars with better protection.

Enterprise Commissioner Erkki Liikanen will urge the commission to consider whether to adopt a voluntary code for manufacturers instead. But road safety organisations are concerned that carmakers will be reluctant to spend money voluntarily and will only do so under tough legislation.

The European Transport Safety Council anticipates that 2,000 lives and 18,000 serious injuries could be prevented every year on EU roads if current commission proposals involving four tests, and not those put forward by Liikanen, are accepted.

RoSPA road safety adviser Dave Rogers said: 'This is appalling. These improvements could do for pedestrians what seatbelts have done to reduce death and injury among car occupants.'

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