Risky busi­ness

The Advertiser - Motoring - - TWO WHEELS -

OLDER riders shouldn’t bor­row their mates’ sports bikes or they could lit­er­ally go for a spin. That’s one of the stand­out find­ings of a two-year study into mo­tor­cy­cle crashes.

Aus­troads, which rep­re­sents the state and ter­ri­tory trans­port bod­ies, com­mis­sioned Neu­ro­science Re­search Aus­tralia to as­sess the risk fac­tors in­flu­enc­ing crash in­volve­ment among mo­tor­cy­clists.

The study fo­cused on 92 se­ri­ous in­jury and 10 fa­tal crashes in NSW, Sydney, Hunter and Illawarra re­gions, pro­vid­ing a mix of ru­ral and ur­ban lo­ca­tions.

More than 330 con­trol riders — de­fined as those who had rid­den through the crash lo­ca­tions with­out fall­ing off — were also sur­veyed to com­pare with the 102 riders in the crashes. Riders were pre­dom­i­nantly male with a me­dian age of 37 years.

Away from sports ma­chines, older riders tended to be less rep­re­sented in crashes but spent longer re­cov­er­ing when they did fall. Aus­troads notes it is the first time in­creased sever­ity of out­come with older age has been re­ported in mo­tor­cy­clists, though most riders Cars­guide deals with know from per­sonal and anec­do­tal ex­pe­ri­ence we don’t “bounce” as well as we did in our 20s.

Three main crash types were iden­ti­fied. The SMIDSY (Sorry mate I didn’t see you) ef­fect ac­counted for 36 per cent of the crashes an­a­lysed and was pre­dom­i­nantly cars not notic­ing the bike.

Riders fail­ing to ne­go­ti­ate a turn or cor­ner con­trib­uted to 35 per cent of all in­ci­dents and fail­ing to brake early or hard enough rep­re­sented 13 per cent of all falls.

The re­port also iden­ti­fied pro­tec­tive cloth­ing as hav­ing a ma­jor in­flu­ence on re­duc­ing in­jury but “there was no sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence in the num­ber of riders sus­tain­ing any in­jury to the body ar­eas cov­ered by mo­tor­cy­cle-spe­cific or other cloth­ing, ex­cept for gloves. Riders who wore gloves that were not de­signed for mo­tor­cy­cle use were sig­nif­i­cantly more likely to sus­tain in­jury to the hands.”

The study mir­rors re­search by Dr Chris Hur­ren from Deakin Univer­sity, who found three out of 10 pairs of re­in­forced denim jeans passed a Euro­pean-stan­dard abra­sion test, while only two of 10 com­monly worn mo­tor­bike suits achieved a pass mark.

Other find­ings from the Aus­troads study in­cludes:

Rid­ing an un­fa­mil­iar mo­tor­cy­cle sig­nif­i­cantly in­creased the odds of be­ing in the crash sam­ple.

Riders who rode the crash lo­ca­tion daily had seven times the odds of be­ing in the crash sam­ple than the con­trol sam­ple.

A pro­tec­tive ef­fect was ob­served when the trip pur­pose was re­ported as com­mut­ing or gen­eral trans­port rather than for recre­ational pur­poses.

Ex­am­i­na­tion of hel­met per­for­mance in­di­cated full face hel­mets pro­vided bet­ter pro­tec­tion than open face hel­mets, and most im­pacts to the hel­met or head of the rider occurred to the front of the hel­met or the face of the rider.

Most crashes occurred within 33km of home.

The Aus­troads re­port iden­ti­fied a num­ber of coun­ter­mea­sure themes, in­clud­ing that riders need good qual­ity pro­tec­tive equip­ment, mo­tor­cy­cle de­sign should min­imise rider in­jury and road­side “fur­ni­ture” — poles and guard rails — needs to be more for­giv­ing when hit.

Play­inPlaPlP Pl­laayi­ingy Play­ingy­ingyiny ng gi g iit­tit iti ts t ssaffe::safe:safes afe:afe :T: T The­hee he Ausst­tr­roaadss Aus­troads rre­por­rt­tre­port ssaayysssaysTh rri­iderrsss­rid­ers sshoulld­should have haavee good quaal­li­itty qual­ity ty prrot­tec­ct­ti­ive pro­tec­tive

equi­ip­mentt equip­ment

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.