New EU rules for safer and more environmental lorries

The European Commission proposed today new rules to allow manufacturers to develop more aerodynamic lorries which will reduce fuel consumption by 7-10%, cut emissions of greenhouse gases, and also enhance the safety of vulnerable road users.

The proposal will allow cabins with a rounded shape and for the use of aerodynamic flaps at the back the trailer. These measures will considerably improve the aerodynamics of vehicles, saving approximately € 5,000 per year in fuel costs for a typical long-distance lorry covering 100,000 km. This represents a 7–10% cut in greenhouse gas emissions (or 7.8 tonnes of CO2 for the same long-distance lorry covering 100,000 km). At the same time, the field of vision of the driver will be improved, helping to save the lives of 300 to 500 vulnerable road users such as pedestrians or cyclists every year.

Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, said: “A brick is the least aerodynamic shape you can imagine, that’s why we need to improve the shape of the lorries on our roads. These changes make road transport cleaner and safer. They will reduce hauliers’ fuel bills and give European manufacturers a head-start in designing the truck of the future, a greener truck for the global market.

The rules setting the specifications for heavy goods vehicles date back to 1996 (Directive 96/53/EC ). They now need to be updated to take account of technological developments.

Read the new rules (here )

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