What is Chapter 8?

What is Chapter 8 and its legal status?

The use of Chapter 8 compliant vehicle livery is considered DfT best practice and TGS recommend that any vehicles stopping on UK roads for works or inspection purposes should be compliant.

It is intended to provide a standard of good practice and is considered as the minimum requirement, which should always be achieved.

Whilst Chapter 8 is not legislation, by not complying with these guidelines you are leaving yourself open to potential legal action should an accident happen involving your fleet.

Officially the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the Helath and Safety at Work (NI) Order 1978 require all clients, employers and employees to establish and maintain safe systems of work.

Chapter 8 may be considered as representing what is reasonably practicable for the enforcement of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, the Health and Safety at Work (NI) Order 1978, and associated regulations.

Chapter 8 sets out a code of practice to enable the legal requirements to be met in a wide variety of circumstances. Although it has no statutory force (except in Northern Ireland where an authorised officer for the Department may deem it to have such force); it should be noted that many of the basic principles contained in this document are also covered in the Safety at Street Works and Road Works - A Code of Practice, which has legal backing under Sections 65 and 124 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 and Article 25 of the Street Works (NI) Order 1995.

What are 'Chapter 8 compliant' markings?

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 shall:

  • be equipped with high visibility rear markings
  • be of a conspicuous colour (e.g. yellow or white). A non-reflective hello 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 45-60º 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.