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Encouraging the UK to be van smart

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Van walkaround check

DVSA and the transport industry are working together to encourage van owners and drivers to better maintain their vehicles.

We’re doing this by highlighting the road safety risks associated with poor maintenance and overloading.

More vans and more miles

In 2014 to 2015 there were over 3.5 million light goods vehicles registered in Great Britain, travelling an estimated 45.5 billion vehicle miles. Recent forecasts from the Department for Transport show that this figure will continue to rise substantially in the coming years.

Operating a poorly maintained van could result in an accident, not only endangering the driver, but the lives of other road users. Making sure these vehicles are regularly serviced and maintained will help goods and services reach their destination – promoting a reputation for reliability and increasing road safety.

How we’re helping and encouraging

We’ve created a range of useful videos and guidance to encourage van users to stay safe and legal. These have all been published to a clear and simple guide on GOV.UK.

It includes things like the routine walkaround check, to highlight mechanical areas of concern. The walkaround checklist contains an instructional diagram of the daily routine checks a van driver should carry out before using their vehicle.

The most commonly identified defects are:

·       tyres
·       lights and reflectors
·       suspension
·       steering
·       transmission

Some of the more essential information for van drivers includes things like weight limits and loading, speed limits for vans, and driving hours.

All the videos, guides and information can be found at

You can also help

If you’re an MOT tester or garage owner, you can also encourage van owners and drivers to stay safe and legal.

When you have customers who own or drive a van, please feel free to share this information with them and encourage them to use the walkaround checklist on a daily basis.

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  1. Comment by Stephen posted on

    On a similar.Why can't they enforce driving lessons for all van drivers, as they do for HGV's.
    I'm not saying all van drivers are the same BUT. They can't use the N/S mirror when overtaking.

  2. Comment by Chris Larkin posted on

    Its not unusual nowadays to see a van in for its first MOT test with well over 100,000 miles already clocked up and in a pretty poor condition having had very little in the way of maintenance over its short life.

  3. Comment by brian dunn posted on

    brian-6/1/2016 i test a lot of vans & the majority of them are badly maintained wrecks i think they should on a documented maintenance schedule like lorries are and checked regularly.

  4. Comment by ronnie posted on

    most van drivers or garages never check their vehicles prior to presenting for mot test judging from the comments you get when you give them a VT30 ie youve failed it on THAT ? Cant you just give me a pass ill fix it later my response to that is if you have bothered to check the basics lights tyres wipers horn etc prior to me testing it ! i could have checked and adjusted the headlight alignment and issued a PRS saving your and my time and your van would have passed its mot