CLOCS Safety Forum #17 - the safety of work-related driving

25 Jul 2023

The safety of work-related driving - a history and reality check

The CLOCS community has made a commitment to strive for safer, leaner and greener construction logistics and we are all on a journey towards the ultimate aim of zero fatalities and serious injuries from construction related vehicles.

To understand that journey, it is important to look back and reflect upon the history of work-related road safety (WRRS), identify the key milestones along the way and consider the impact of the various reports, initiatives and organisations developed to help raise standards.

At the July Safety Forum we were joined by Shaun Helman, Chief Scientist at TRL (Transport Research Laboratory) who shared his vast knowledge on this subject, and his own thoughts and insights on the success, or otherwise, of the work undertaken to date.

Shaun started by looking at the original work undertaken by TRL which ultimately led to the conception of CLOCS, looking specifically at the design and specification of vehicles, driver behaviour and contractual/’operational practices.

He then talked through various reports and some of the initiatives which were developed off the back of these reports, starting with the DfT ‘Road Safety: The Next Steps’report from 1987 and concluding with DfT’s ‘The Road Safety Statement 2019: A Lifetime of Road Safety’, before touching upon some of the more recent challenges such as the explosion of van drivers on our roads due to online shopping, and the prevalence of e-scooters and delivery bikes sharing our roads.

Shaun concluded by asking some key questions of the CLOCS community including ‘how can CLOCS show leadership in this area?’ 

There was an interesting group discussion following Shaun’s presentation with delegates taking the opportunity to quiz Shaun or raise their own thoughts and observations.

Looking forward

Shaun provided a detailed breakdown of the journey that WRRS has been on for over 35 years and highlighted that there is still much work to do, with new challenges appearing which will require a new way of thinking and new solutions. He demonstrated the clear need for a community of like-minded organisations who choose to collaborate and share best practice and the need to draw more people into that community to drive standards up across the whole industry.

And finally...

Our thanks to Shaun for giving up his time to share his knowledge and insights with the CLOCS community, and thanks also those who attended, sharing their own thoughts and experiences. The voice of our members is vital to the success of CLOCS so please contact the team if you have any queries, suggestions or concerns about any aspect of CLOCS.

CLOCS needs you…..
These Safety Forums are designed to support and inform Champions so please do let us know if you have any suggestions for future topics or whether you, or someone you know, would want to come along to a future Forum and share their expertise on a particular topic.
If you can think or anything or anyone, please contact Andy Brooke at