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Backwatch safety mirror fitted as standard with Clarks drive-away welfare conversion

CLARKS Vehicle Conversions has said it will fit blind spot detection technology to all its drive-away welfare conversion vans as standard to help business van operators protect vulnerable road users.

The Doncaster based vehicle converter is doing this in support of Road Safety Week (17-23 November) with a charity fundraiser, but its long-term vision is that more business van drivers use blind spot technology.

Clarks will fit a rear and side camera with a 120° view angle and night vision infra-red to help eliminate a significant blind spot which is often the cause of collisions with other road users.

8 in 10 companies don’t use blind spot sensors on their large commercial vehicles

The theme of this year’s Road Safety Week is looking out for one another, which highlights how important it is to look out for vulnerable road users including pedestrians and cyclists.

Brake – the charity behind the road safety themed week – reports that pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists account for 59% of the UK’s road deaths and serious injuries.

They are encouraging employers with staff who drive for work to make use of technology to minimise blind spots, which are a major cause of collisions between vans and cyclists.

But a survey by Brake and the Licence Bureau found that 8 in 10 companies don’t use blind spot sensors on their large commercial vehicles and 7 in 10 don’t use blind spot cameras.

Paul Clark, Managing Director at Clarks said: “It’s disappointing that more companies don’t use this technology which could save the lives of many vulnerable road users.

“More than half of Clarks’ staff cycle regularly so from a personal point of view it’s important that as a business we invest in educating drivers on being more cycle aware.”

Live footage from the cameras appears on a small screen on one half of the rear view mirror (pictured). The picture shows the side camera position unless the vehicle is in reverse.

The cameras are provided by Backwatch Safety Products – an associate of FORS which promotes cycle awareness among drivers in London and across the country.

Clarks will run a ‘Bright Day’ during Road Safety Week when employees will wear something bright to raise money for Brake and highlight the importance of being seen on the road.

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