May 4, 2018 at 4:32 pm #26701
Rank: 1200cc Rider
- Bike: Suzuki DR650 ADV
Take care and ride safely out there folks, and be far more cautious when overtaking it seems.
Motorcyclists involved in crashes are 21 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured than other road users, ACC’s David Keilty says.
Motorcycle safety is under the spotlight as there have been 13 more motorcycle deaths to May 4 this year than there were over the same time period last year.
In just four months New Zealand’s motorcycle fatality toll is already at a high of 26 compared to 13 in 2017.
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In the last 12 months (as of May 4), New Zealand Transport Agency’s table shows 55 motorbike riders and three pillions have been killed which is up 10 from last year.
The Ministry of Transport said 13 of those killed last year involved riding Harley Davidson bikes, seven deaths involved Yamaha bikes.
Police and ACC said nearly a third of deaths on our roads this year have involved motorcycles and that the motorcycle trend has steadily grown in the past three years.
In 2015 there was 130,660 registered motorcycles, in 2016 there was 136,795 and in 2017 there was 143,044.
On April 30 2018, 401,782 people in New Zealand held a full motorcycle class 6 licence, 19,435 held a restricted and 73,137 held a learner licence.
Keilty said male riders aged 40 and above show statistically they are more likely to be involved in a fatal crash.
“Motorcyclists can do a lot to keep themselves safe, for instance taking part in Ride Forever coaching, being aware and adapting to changing conditions is very important. The attitude and behaviour of both the motorcycle rider and other road users impacts greatly on rider safety.”
Institute of Advanced Motorist’s national president and rider Carey Griffiths said riding a motorcycle takes a greater degree of skill and awareness than driving a car.
“Riders of motorcycles are more at risk than car drivers per kilometre travelled because they don’t enjoy the protection of reinforced metal cages with airbags.
“Motorcycles are extremely unforgiving of error or inattention, and deliberately reckless actions are a recipe for disaster.”
Griffiths said there is “no single magic bullet” when it comes to reducing casualties and that everyone needs to take responsibility and make changes.
She said road designers and maintainers need to take motorcycles into account when designing and note that loose gravel or poor road surfaces have a big impact.
“Drivers of other vehicles need to be alert for motorcycles, riders need to take responsibility for riding in a way that maximises their visibility and focus on wearing the best protective equipment we can afford.
“Probably if riders were going to do one thing, it’s to put away the ego and get independent, professional assessment of how they ride, and advice on how to keep safe. There’s no excuse not to,” she said.
Assistant Commissioner for road policing Sandra Venables said it’s been a terrible start to the year for motorcyclists and the families they haven’t come home to.
“I urge motorcyclists to be cautious and not take unnecessary risks. A dangerous overtaking manoeuvre could mean instead of getting there faster, you don’t get there at all. Half of the lives lost this year have been due to unsafe overtaking.”
Ministry of Transport’s Dan Jenkins said while not all regions have data collected for motorcycle fatalities, the top three recorded regions this year are Canterbury, Waikato and Auckland.
ACC safety tips for motorcyclists:
- All riders take the opportunity of upskilling via Ride Forever coaching.
- Make sure you and any pillion rider are wearing motorcycle-specific protective equipment.
- Ride to the conditions and within your experience and skill levels.Take every opportunity to see and be seen. Wearing high viz and reflective clothing can help.
- Seek out technologies such as ABS which will help you stay safe.
- Maintain your bike to ensure it is kept at its optimum reliability.
- Be aware of your surroundings and have a plan if things go wrong.
“None of the above will be a ‘silver bullet’ for staying safe, but each of these actions will help increase your chances of staying safe out on the road,” Keilty said.
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