Conspicuity marking requirements on goods vehicles:
FTA compliance guide

Freight Transport Association logo for FTA compliance guide to conspicuity markings on goods vehicles from the Department of Transport (DtF).

For more detailed information click here.

INTRODUCTION

The Department for Transport (DfT) has committed to implementing European legislation on the fitment of conspicuity markings to large goods vehicles. These markings effectively illuminate the outline of a vehicle at night by reflection from the headlights of vehicles following behind.
DfT's research estimates the potential to prevent 76 killed and serious injury accidents per year if all goods vehicles were fitted with conspicuity markings.

These requirements were intended to be transposed into the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations and enter into force on 10th October 2009. However, in September 2009, the Secretary of State for Transport announced that the requirement for heavy goods vehicles to be fitted with conspicuity markings had been postponed and will be introduced from 10th July 2011.

This guide provides details of the legislation regarding conspicuity markings and guidance on how to comply with the marking requirements including examples of various vehicle body types and designs. It has been produced for information purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for the full legislative details contained in UN ECE Regulations or the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989.

Edition 2 of the guide incorporates amendments to UN ECE Regulation 48 which entered into force on 9th December 2010 concerning derogations and changes to height requirements for conspicuity markings.

BACKGROUND

Currently, the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989 (RVLR) require certain motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight exceeding 7.5 tonnes to be fitted with retro-reflective rear marker plates approved to the European Regulation, UNECE Regulation 70.00. (The latest version of this regulation is known as Regulation 70.01, however the UK still permits the use of Regulation 70.00 marker plates.)
These plates are fitted in addition to rear lights and reflectors and are intended to make the vehicle more conspicuous to other drivers so they are aware of the presence of a large, potentially slow moving vehicle.

Some vehicle operators also fit conspicuity markings to their vehicles. These are vertical and horizontal lines of retroreflective material which emphasise the length and shape of the vehicle and also warn other drivers of their presence. UNECE Regulation 104 (R104) provides a technical specification for these conspicuity markings and their use on vehicles in the UK is optional at present under the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations.

UNECE Regulation 48 (R48) is a European regulation that sets out harmonised installation requirements for vehicle lights and reflectors. It is broadly equivalent to the RVLR and the UK cannot refuse registration of vehicles approved to this regulation on the grounds of their lighting.
Recently R48 was amended to mandate R104 specification conspicuity markings on certain new H.G.V.'s and trailers.

For further detailed information see the two links below.


Conspicuity marking requirements on goods vehicles:
FTA compliance guide

Conspicuity marking requirements on goods vehicles: FTA compliance guide (8 page PDF booklet available to download) Conspicuity marking requirements on goods vehicles: FTA compliance guide

Published: Edition 2: February 2011

Type(s): 8 page PDF booklet - FTA compliance guide

Product code: n/a

Price: Free

Summary

This PDF guide can be downloaded via the following external page link and aims to explain how the Department for Transport (DfT) has committed to implementing European legislation on the fitment of conspicuity markings to large goods vehicles. These markings effectively illuminate the outline of a vehicle at night by reflection from the headlights of vehicles following behind.
Click here to download the 8 page "FTA Department for Transport Conspicuity Guide" PDF

This 8 page booklet is only a guide and not a definitive source of legal information. This guide provides details of the legislation regarding conspicuity markings and guidance on how to comply with the marking requirements including examples of various vehicle body types and designs. It has been produced for information purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for the full legislative details contained in UN ECE Regulations or the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989.
Edition 2 of the guide incorporates amendments to UN ECE Regulation 48 which entered into force on 9th December 2010 concerning derogations and changes to height requirements for conspicuity markings.

Additional useful information can also be found here:
http://www.fta.co.uk/policy_and_compliance/road/vehicles/conspicuity_markings.html