There are rules and regulations that govern our transport system, designed to ensure that everyone is safe
on the roads. This includes pedestrians, cyclists and car owners as well as transport companies. The United
Kingdom, therefore, via the Department of Transport introduced a comprehensive guide, generally called ‘The Red Book’.
This means that work and commercial vehicles need to adhere to the rules to be on the highway. Read on for our rough guide
to Chapter 8 Compliance.
So what is Chapter 8 Compliance?
The Department of Transport has a comprehensive guide for traffic signs and management. Chapter 8 of this
guide (hence the name) is called ‘Traffic Safety Measures and Signs for Road Works and Temporary
Situations’. This is commonly referred to as the Chapter 8 ‘Guidelines’, or ‘Compliance’.
These are a series of guidelines that help to maintain order on the highways. They were devised by Traffic
Signs Manuals under the transport department and it means vehicles that are used for work and commercial
purposes need to be marked. The markings should comply with the Chapter 8 requirements. They should also be
lighted as a way of sticking to the guidelines. The best colors for this are lemon and red which need to be
reflective. Chapter 8 is not a law but you do need to comply so that legal action is not taken against you.
For example, if your vehicles are involved in an accident and you don’t have any markings, you will be
taken to court.
The size of the vehicle determines the type of markings. As an example vehicles that weigh below 7.5 tonnes
should mark the stripes upwards. They should also indicate ‘Highway Maintenance’ at the rear. Those that
weigh over 7.5 tonnes should display a directional arrow.
When is it required?
Compliance with these specifications is recommended for use on all types of highway particularly high speed roads. All vehicles stopping on the highway for works purposes or inspections should:
– be equipped with high visibility rear markings
– and should be of a conspicuous colour (e.g. yellow or white).
– A non-reflective yellow colour, No. 355 (lemon) is recommended. High visibility rear markings should comprise either:
– chevron markings comprising alternate strips of ‘Class Ref 2’ to BS EN 12899-1 or retro-reflective grade
– orange-red retro-reflective material and fluorescent yellow non retro-reflective material of not less than 150mm width each, inclined at 45-60° to the horizontal and pointing upwards, or a solid block of fluorescent orange/red retro-reflective material. These markings should cover as much of the rear-facing portion of the vehicle as possible without obscuring windows, vehicle lighting or registration plates.
– In addition, maintenance vehicles will need ‘HIGHWAY MAINTENANCE’ text. ‘MOTORWAY MAINTENANCE’ may be used instead when working on motorways only. This text must be a minimum of 70mm high for temporary traffic management vehicles and 140mm for all other vehicles carrying personnel or equipment.
– A strip of micro-prismatic grade material that is a minimum of 50mm wide must be fitted along either side
of vehicle whilst red retro-reflective tape shall also be applied to all rear facing edges of open doors,
guardrails and equipment lockers.
– Where rear facing high visibility markings may be obscured by any device mounted on the vehicle (e.g.
lorry-mounted crash cushion (LMCC) or cone laying adaptation), additional high visibility rear markings
shall be applied to any face of the device which is displayed to the rear and other road users.
Thus, Chapter 8 includes principles that should be followed to be in compliance with the laws of the road.
It is a way of implementing the law such as the Health and Safety at work Act. This means that many
accidents are avoided due to the conspicuous markings on the vehicles. Chapter 8 uses are put in place to
control the traffic and it is used to sustain order and security on the roads. It is also a way of making
sure that the vehicles are fit to be on the highways. Remember, even though it has not been passed as law,
it is always better to be safe. You can get your vehicle marked according to the required standards. The
markings should be striking enough to be noticed and should also be on par with the weight of the vehicle.
Unlimited Logos Ltd can help with Chapter 8 kits suitable for your vehicle and advice for the best materials to