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Bikers beware as travel restrictions are lifted - RoSPA launches Better Bikers campaign

UNITED KINGDOM / AGILITYPR.NEWS / July 03, 2020 / Motorcyclists planning to get back on the road this weekend as travel restrictions are lifted are being asked to take care, particularly on country roads.


Despite making up just two per cent of Scottish road users, bikers make up a disproportionate number of those who are killed and seriously injured every year, with a high number of incidents happening on rural roads.


One in five crashes on Scotland’s non-built-up roads involve motorcycles, and of those, three in five result in a death. A total of 85 per cent of all biker deaths were on rural roads in 2018.


The message comes from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), as it launches its Better Bikers campaign, which aims to increase the uptake of post-test training for Scottish motorcyclists.


Nick Lloyd, the charity’s head of road safety, said: “With the easing of restrictions ahead of the weekend we’re expecting to see a large increase in the number of leisure rides and drives across the country, and we’re really concerned that this might lead to a sudden spike in motorcyclist casualties.


“Those who already ride rural roads will know of their dangers – sharp bends, blind corners, other motorists and poor road surfaces – but it’s likely to have been a while since they experienced these conditions, so may need to re-familiarise themselves. There are also likely to be those who are not as experienced on rural roads who will be getting out and about this weekend, so they really need to be aware of the inherent dangers.


“We are also urging drivers who are planning trips this weekend to be vigilant on country roads and be looking out for bikers at all times.”


As part of the campaign, RoSPA has launched a digital hub at www.BetterBikers.org.uk, which will host information, advice and resources on how to handle country roads and the dangers they present.


It will be updated over the summer, but it currently includes a pre-ride maintenance checklist for your bike, and a video on the positions to take when approaching bends.


There are also links to organisations that can help bikers to upskill.


Nick added: “Motorcyclists are generally the best-trained motorists on the road due to the extensive nature of the test and licence requirements, but despite them being very vulnerable on the road, few then continue with their learning once they’ve passed. We want them all to be even better bikers.


“The fact is, further training will make you an even better biker, improving your rides by giving you planning and observation skills, making you smoother and putting you in more control, with the added bonus of increasing your safety.”


To find out more about the campaign, see www.BetterBikers.org.uk