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Foreign HGVs 'Cause UK Road Safety Threat'

Lorries from overseas are causing a potential car insurance threat on UK roads, Liverpool Victoria said today.According to the car insurance provider, the number of heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) from elsewhere in the EU has increased by 33 per cent since 2001, and will grow by a further 18 per cent before 2013. This means that, currently, around one lorry in seven being driven in Britain is of foreign origin.These drivers can prove dangerous due to the heightened possibility that they are unfamiliar with UK road laws, and also because their vehicle's driving seat is generally placed on the left, rather than the right. This proves a particular problem with lorries, as they will be unable to look in their mirrors down the centre of the road - and might therefore find it harder to spot overtaking vehicles.Liverpool Victoria's research also indicated that the foreign lorries - which primarily originate from the Netherlands, Germany and Poland - were also less likely to meet national roadworthiness standards than their UK equivalents.John O'Roarke, managing director at the car insurance provider, said: "Over the last seven years we have seen a significant increase in the number of accidents involving lorries from overseas. Not only is being involved in an accident with a lorry frightening but it can also be very costly and time consuming, as your insurer may have trouble tracing and communicating with the insurer of the vehicle."We are calling on the government to bring in legislation to make it compulsory for left-hand drive heavy goods vehicles to be fitted with blind spot mirrors to help avoid these kinds of accidents."

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