Mo­tor­cy­clists given a spring safety tune-up

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

With the num­ber of mo­tor­cy­cles on Waikato roads ex­pected to swell in com­ing weeks, rid­ers are be­ing urged to first check their bikes are road ready.

The Waikato Re­gional Road Safety Ed­u­ca­tion Group has erected bill­boards on key routes on the state high­way net­work pop­u­lar with rid­ers.

Th­ese bill­boards will be in place un­til mid De­cem­ber and pro­mote four key safety mes­sages for rid­ers: plan cor­ners, avoid driv­ers’ blind spots, al­low time to re­act, and re­spect road con­di­tions.

‘‘Spring tra­di­tion­ally marks a re­turn to rid­ing, with mo­tor­cy­clists keen to get back on the road and take ad­van­tage of the im­prov­ing weather,’’ said Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil’s road safety co­or­di­na­tor, Monique Haines.

‘‘When you’re head­ing out on that first ride, give your tyres and your­self a chance to warm up,’’ she ad­vised.

‘‘Also, take the time to per­form a pre-ride check of your bike, as care­ful checks may help to pre­vent a crash. A well main­tained, reg­u­larly ser­viced and well set up bike is a joy to ride,’’ Mrs Haines, who is also a mo­tor­cy­cle en­thu­si­ast, said.

‘‘It’s no sur­prise that mo­tor­cy­clists have a higher level of risk per kilo­me­tre trav­elled. The risk of be­ing in­volved in a fatal or in­jury crash is 20 times higher for a mo­tor­cy­clist than a car driver over the same dis­tance trav­elled.

‘‘Mo­tor­cy­clists make up 9

per cent of all in­jured road users and face risks higher than other ve­hi­cle driv­ers. The two main risk fac­tors are a de­creased sta­bil­ity and a much lower level of occupant pro­tec­tion than is pro­vided by a car.’’

The peak times for all mo­tor­cy­cle crashes are be­tween noon and 4pm on Satur­days and Sun­days for re­cre­ational rid­ers, and be­tween 4pm and 8pm on week­days for com­muters.

‘‘Rid­ers make up 42 per cent of all ca­su­al­ties, but 71 per cent of road deaths. Many of th­ese will be rid­ers of bikes 500cc or big­ger, be­cause they spend a greater pro­por­tion of time on high­ways trav­el­ling at higher speeds.’’

Mrs Haines urged all mo­tor­cy­clists to take the op­por­tu­nity to at­tend road rider train­ing cour­ses to im­prove their skills and con­fi­dence.

‘‘Rid­ing train­ing events are run across the re­gion and they’re not just for be­gin­ners – they are also ideal for ex­pe­ri­enced rid­ers, as well as those re­turn­ing to rid­ing af­ter a break of a num­ber of years.’’

More tips to keep you safe while rid­ing, as well as in­for­ma­tion on Waikato rider train­ing events, can be found at re­

The Waikato Re­gional Road Safety Ed­u­ca­tion Group is led by Waikato Re­gional Coun­cil, work­ing in con­junc­tion with other re­gional safety stake­hold­ers in­clud­ing the NZ Trans­port Agency, Po­lice, ACC and coun­cils.

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