European vehicle safety assessment program Euro NCAP said it was expanding its scope from just cars and vans to include safety information about new heavy trucks.

It said the new ‘Truck Safe’ rating scheme would enable the freight industry to identify and assess the safety level of equipment in heavy truck fleets.

Heavy trucks represent almost 1.5% of vehicles on Europe’s roads but are involved in almost 15% of all EU road deaths.

Euro NCAP said advanced driver assistance technologies were now standard on most European cars and they had contributed to more than a 40% reduction in some types of crashes.

HGVs are involved in similar collisions but don’t have the technology fitted, leading to a disproportionate number of casualties in crashes involving heavy vehicles.

Euro NCAP said creating a market where the safest choice of vehicle was the most profitable choice of vehicle would be critical to success.

It is exploring ways to link with national, regional and local initiatives such as local access restrictions, freight best practice schemes, public procurement contracting, and insurers to create incentives.