Union working on road safety

Farmers and crofters are urged to take five minutes to check the road worthiness of their vehicles and trailers before driving on public roads.

NFU Scotland is continuing to work with Police Scotland and the Driver and Vehicles Standards Agency (DVSA) to make the roads safer across Scotland.

As many farmers and crofters prepare for harvest, the message is clear: check your vehicles are roadworthy or you could face prosecution.

A six-point check list should be carried out as a bare minimum to ensure the vehicle and trailer are both legal to be on the road, and includes checking your: brakes (including handbrake on both vehicle and trailer); steering; lights; electrics; tyres and cleanliness (incrusted mud preventing certain parts from fully functioning, for example).

Linlithgow farmer, Jamie Smart, NFU Scotland’s Legal and Technical Committee Chairman commented: “Once again the Union is working with DVSA and Police Scotland to tackle the issue of trailers in a poor condition being used on public roads and presenting a real danger to other road users.

“Recent evidence suggests that issues with trailers, in particular, are commonplace, and there have been a great number of instances where trailers have been immediately impounded due to major mechanical defects which mean they are not roadworthy.

“NFU Scotland urges all members to ensure that where they are using trailers on public roads, they have carried out basic safety checks, and have the vehicle regularly serviced and any required maintenance completed.

“The penalties for not maintaining vehicles can be severe and in some cases poorly maintained vehicles and trailers have the potential to lead to fatal accidents. We do not want to see our members on the receiving end.”