What are chapter 8 vehicle markings?
Chapter 8 markings are the red and yellow diagonally positioned stripes often seen on the back of police vans and motorway service vehicles. They are called ‘chapter 8’ as they are featured in the government’s Traffic Signs Manual, in chapter 8, where it states that any vehicles that have to stop on high-speed roads to carry out work or inspections must comply with Chapter 8 recommendations.
Ideally, anyone who regularly travels on high speed roads for work purposes should have a clearly marked vehicle in case of unexpected stops or breakdowns.
The most obvious vehicles are :
Motorway work vehicles
Local authority work vehicles
Highways inspector vans
Motorway maintenance work vehicles
Emergency responder vehicles, such as police, ambulance and fire
Motorway service vehicles, both private and public
Utility companies working on or around the motorway
Couriers and parcel delivery vans
This is not an exhaustive list and really it is up to you, the driver, to think about how often you drive on motorways. Do you drive in the winter? Do you find yourself travelling long distances? Do you travel outside England into Scotland and Wales?
Is it illegal not to have Chapter 8 chevron markings?
It is not illegal in England not to have Chapter 8 chevron markings, but it is illegal in Scotland and Wales. In England, the legislation heavily recommends adding chevrons through the use of a professional company such as https://www.vehiclechevrons.com/, but you won’t be penalised if you don’t. If you don’t have the time to spare, then you could try one of the chevron kits which are also designed to conform with the recommendations.
I regularly travel in a van up and down the motorway. Am I affected?
Despite not being a legal necessity to have Chapter 8 chevrons added to your van or delivery vehicle, it is seen as good practise to do so. Take a look at the government regulations at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/traffic-signs-manual for more information on how the government recommends utility vehicles be marked, along with any complementary signage.
If you travel regularly and stop regularly, then it is certainly worth considering, as not only does it make you and those around you safer, it also gives a apositive and lthy professional image.