July 23 2014.

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) is urging businesses to educate their fleet managers and at-work drivers about the risks of failing to check blind spots before carrying out a manoeuvre.

Figures published by the Department for Transport show that during 2012, a total of 866 vulnerable road users were killed on the UK's roads, while a further 13,781 were seriously injured.

IOSH senior policy and technical adviser Phil Bates said: “It’s vital that companies ensure their workers are fully aware of their responsibilities to act in a safe and shrewd manner every time they get behind the wheel.

“This means grasping the importance of blind spots, as 75 per cent of collisions reported in Britain each year take place at or near junctions, where motorists may have had their vision obscured.”

Phil added: "Addressing and managing the hazards caused by blind spots, and making certain drivers are manoeuvring with attention to detail, is crucial.”

In order for fleets to lower the risk of their drivers being involved in crashes with susceptible road users, there are a range of technologies that are now on hand to help accomplish this goal.

They include the use of in-car CCTVs to give drivers a 360-degree view around their vehicle, as well as wide angle and blind spot mirrors, automatic side mirrors that move to also cover blind spots when turning, and rear, front and side sensors to sense surrounding obstacles.