Global NCAP Urges Fleet Managers to Opt for 'Five Star' Safety

May 05, 2014, 08:00 ET from Global NCAP

LONDON, May 5, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

Global NCAP has published new guidelines for organizations operating vehicle fleets, recommending fleet purchasers only select vehicles that have been rated by New Car Assessment Programmes (NCAPs) with the 'five star' or 'Top Pick' safety rating. Global NCAP also advises fleet managers to confirm that the cars they purchase meet the UN's minimum vehicle safety standards.

Global NCAP Secretary General David Ward said: "Any organization can improve safety by carefully selecting the vehicles it uses. Global NCAP encourages all fleet managers both public and private to make 'five star' safety their goal in the UN Decade of Action. By following Global NCAP's new guidelines, it will be easier for organizations to ensure that the safety of their vehicle fleet provides acceptable levels of protection to their employees."

For organizations with global fleets, the lack of regulation by governments in emerging markets and the absence of independent crash tests has become a concern. Of the 65 million new passenger cars built last year, up to a third would fail to pass the UN's front and side crash tests, and have no air bags, ABS or electronic stability control (ESC).

As well as specifying 'five star' cars wherever possible, the guidelines propose that fleets ask manufacturers to confirm that the vehicle passes the minimum United Nations safety regulations concerning seat belts, and front and side crash tests. Vehicles that meet regulations for electronic stability control and pedestrian protection are also rated as 'strongly preferred' and the new crash avoidance technology autonomous emergency braking (AEB) is 'highly recommended'.

Max Mosley, Chairman of Global NCAP, said: "If a company provides a car for their staff to use, it should be as safe as reasonably possible. A five-star or Top Pick safety rating is the best indication of this. It's prudent also to check whether cars also meet the UN's minimum safety regulations. With so many global brands neglecting to apply these regulations, fleet managers and company car drivers should not assume basic safety comes as standard."

A growing number of organisations already operate five-star fleet policies, including BHP Billiton, the world's largest resource extraction company, and the Governments of Australia and Sweden. Vehicle manufacturers have upgraded the standard safety equipment in vehicles for these markets as a result.


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