Existing rules laid down by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have played a bigger part in raising health and safety standards in the haulage sector than the new corporate manslaughter act will do.

That is the opinion of the Freight Transport Association (FTA), which also suggested that the rise of civil litigation has provoked a more safety-conscious approach within the industry.

According to Chris Macrae, global supply chain policy manager at the FTA, the last 15 years has seen a "continual ramping up" of the enforcement of safety standards.

He stated: "I am not that certain that standards will be affected by the corporate manslaughter legislation."

Mr Macrae went on to say that HSE enforcement over the last ten years has had a greater impact.

The new corporate manslaughter legislation came into force in the UK on April 6th of this year.