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What is the Direct Vision Standard?

From 1 March 2021, the minimum DVS rating will be one star to enter or operate in Greater London and this will then increase to a minimum of three stars in 2024.

If your vehicle does not meet the DVS star rating or is not rated, you will need to meet the ‘Safe System’ requirements to be granted a Direct Vision permit.

It will be unlawful to operate a HGV above 12 tonnes GVW in Greater London without a HGV safety permit.

The DVS scheme objectively measures a driver’s direct view through the windows of a HGV cab. This is communicated as a star rating from zero (poor) to five (excellent), which indicates the level of risk to people walking and cycling in close proximity of the vehicle.

The DVS Safe System is a series of vehicle safety measures fitted after point of manufacture.

No specific make or brand of Direct Vision Standard equipment or technology will be mandated as part of the Safe System.


TfL DVS Application & Administration

DVS Permit Application

You can apply for a DVS London safety permit, free of charge on the Transport for London DVS website.

Every vehicle must meet a minimum DVS star rating of one star, unless exempt from the Direct Vision scheme.

Where this rating is one star or above, fleet operators will be able to apply for a safety permit with no further mandatory action required.

TfL DVS Permits will not be automatically issued; fleet operators will still be required to apply for a permit when the application process opens, or a new vehicle is procured.

For more information on TfL DVS star ratings and vehicle manufacturer contact details, visit

Permit Administration

Operators of vehicles requiring a permit will need to apply to TfL. Permits will be issued electronically only, no certificate or hard copy permit will be issued.

Enforcement will be carried out by comparing the TfL database of vehicle registrations with valid permits with the automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) camera captures of vehicles entering London.

The Direct Vision Standard start date was the 1 March 2021. A HGV found to be in breach of the permit scheme, not adhering to DVS compliance will be issued a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) of up to £550 (reduced by 50 per cent if paid within 14 days). TfL will also have the ability to revoke or suspend a permit if a vehicle that has been granted a permit is later found to be in breach of the permit terms.

Want to see how Crystal Ball can help your fleet become DVS compliant?

Safe System Requirements for Zero Star-Rated Vehicles

  • Class V mirror shall be fitted to the nearside of the vehicle
  • Class VI mirror shall be fitted to the front of the vehicle
  • Side under-run protection shall be fitted to both sides of the vehicle (except where this is impractical or proves to be impossible)
  • External pictorial stickers and markings shall be displayed on vehicles to warn vulnerable road users of the hazards around the vehicle
  • A sensor system that alerts the driver to the presence of a vulnerable road user shall be fitted to the nearside of the vehicle
  • Audible vehicle manoeuvring warning shall be fitted to warn vulnerable road users when a vehicle is turning left
  • A fully operational camera monitoring system shall be fitted to the nearside of the vehicle
Safe System Requirements for Zero Star-Rated Vehicles

How can Crystal Ball help?

  • DVS Camera System
    The DVS Camera kit should aim to completely eliminate or minimise the remaining vehicle blind spot at the nearside as far as is practical and possible. In-cab monitors should ideally be positioned close to a window edge or existing mirror location (without obscuring the view through the window) to minimise the time the driver needs to take their eyes from other important views to scan the monitor. Monitors only intended to show blind spots related to low speed manoeuvring (ie not mirror replacement cameras) may switch off at speeds above 20mph.
  • Sensor System
    Sensors on rigid vehicles should ensure coverage six metres down the nearside or one metre from the rear of the vehicle, whichever is smaller. Sensors should not activate in relation to roadside furniture or stationary vehicles. In the case of tractor units, these should be suitably positioned to provide sufficient coverage, but preventing activation solely on articulation of the trailer. Sensor systems should operate regardless of whether the direction indicators are activated and may switch off at speeds above 20mph.
  • Audible Warnings
    The volume of the audible warning, measured at one metre from the sounder, should be between 65 and 88 decibels/dB(A). The device should have a manual on/off switch for use between the hours of 23:30 and 07:00. Operators should consider an audible warning system that combines spoken warnings and white noise. It is recommended that audible warning devices require a minimum amount of driver intervention. For left-hand drive vehicles, the audible vehicle manoeuvring warning shall be fitted to warn people walking and cycling when a vehicle is turning right.
How can Crystal Ball help?

Check out the map below for the full affected area for DVS:

Direct Vision Standard FAQs

  • Does my vehicle require a HGV safety permit?

    From 26 October 2020, if your vehicle is above 12 tonnes GVW and enters the Greater London area you will require a HGV permit. The only vehicles exempt are cars, vans, buses and coaches.

  • What is my vehicles Direct Vision star rating?

    You can check whether TFL holds a star rating for your vehicle at
    If the star rating is not available you can contact your vehicle manufacturer and provide the VIN number of your HGV. Vehicle manufacturers will advise the star rating.

  • How do I apply for a permit?

    You can apply for a permit by visiting
    You will need to provide vehicle, operator and contact details. If your vehicle is zero star rated you will need to upload photos of the Safe System Equipment. Once the application has been submitted it will be reviewed and either accepted or rejected.

    If your vehicle is one to five star rated an electronic permit will be granted.

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