A draft law to make lorries safer by 2017 has been delayed until 2022 due to industry requests for additional time to develop designs.

The law, which was agreed by the European Union in April this year, would see lorries manufactured with bigger windows and rounder fronts, helping to reduce the drivers’ blind spot.

The changes are to help improve road safety for other road users and reduce the number of cycle accidents caused by HGVs. According to the European Transport Safety Council, lorries are twice as deadly as cars and account for 15 percent of all fatal collisions in Europe.

The delays to the law have met wide criticism from campaigners, including the environmental campaign group, Transport & Environmental and the European Transport Safety Council, who maintain that any delays to the law will cost lives.

Head of policy at Thompsons Solicitors Tom Jones said: “The number of cyclists and pedestrians killed or injured in accidents involving lorries is frightening, and the proposed changes to lorry design is much needed and well overdue.

“To learn that this law, which should dramatically improve the safety of road users, is now being delayed until 2022 is extremely disappointing.

“These changes could prevent unnecessary and devastating deaths on our roads. The manufacturers have won and been granted their request for delay and the losers will be those who die or are seriously injured in those five years.”