It is the crash test which decides which items make it into our system. Only those items constructed to a standard which survives the crash testing will be taken into the Sortimo range. In case of accidents you must be totally sure that there will be no unpleasant surprises emanating from the load area of your vehicle.
To achieve this we do not trust to luck but systematic safety development. We would like to completely eliminate the danger of accident damage but that is not possible. Our testing and continuing concern in the field of safety offers you the best possible protection currently available.
The fitting of airbags into vehicles has been standard for a long time now, but who protects you from the dangers of your payload?
Loose tools and parts can be hazardous while on the move or in an accident. Sortimo International Ltd's in-vehicle racking is an essential part of your health and safety policy. While more and more vans are coming equipped with driver and passenger airbags to protect the van occupants from the front, users need to recognise that an unsecured piece of equipment can become a lethal force in an accident. For example, an unsecured cola bottle can become a 30kg missile in a minor accident. Equate that statement to a power tool or a toolbox - or any other piece of equipment that is in the back of the van and not properly secured - and the risk being taken by the occupants becomes clear.
Current UK Health and Safety at work regulations place a 'duty-of-care' upon employers to take reasonable and practical steps to assess and manage the risks to, their employees whilst at work, and others that may be affected by their work activities. Under this legislation vehicles used for business purposes are considered to form part of the 'workplace' and as such it is necessary for employers to assess and manage the risks associated with the commercial use of their vehicles
Accidents are a principle risk associated with road vehicles that result in many deaths and serious injuries on UK roads each year. It is approximated that work-related road traffic accidents account for 200 road deaths and serious injuries each week (www.dft.gov.uk/drivingforwork/), while the incident of work-related road accidents in which a person was injured and a van was involved is approximately 16,000 per annum (Lang and Rehm, 2006).
As vehicles have become safer with the advent of seat beats, crumple zones and air bags, the majority of deaths and injuries occurring in vehicles are now being caused by un-secured items within the vehicle colliding with the occupants and not by the initial crash.
The European Crash Test ECER 17 is based on a 25kg load being retained at 45kph within a non-commercial vehicle, which would not meet an independent risk assessment for most commercial operators Sortimo have for over 10 years pioneered and continued to raise the bar for Commercial Vehicle safety, loading panel vans to up to 980kg as part of a continued track crash test program. Each test achieves over 22g peak loading which is higher than the human frame is expected to with-stand, and as vehicle manufacturers bulkheads are produced solely as a partition and not a safety feature we test with out a bulkhead in place.
The Transit shown above belonged to a UK Water Utility, the incident occurred as the driver drove over a blind bridge into the back of a lorry. The equipment deformed to absorb the inertia of the incident but critically stayed in place. After a few days off for whip lash the driver was able to return to work.