The type of accident in which riders are involved varies from urban to rural situations, by journey purpose and by style of riding.
Leisure riders, especially sports bike riders, travel considerable distances to attractive areas.
This makes co-operation between neighbouring local authorities and police forces extremely beneficial. In a similar way, longer distance commuters may travel though several authority areas. Analysis of police data or local surveys can provide useful information on home addresses, allowing the campaign elements to be delivered to the target group.
Good examples of campaigns and initiatives include:
Bikesafe is an initiative run by police forces around the UK who work with the motorcycling community by holding assessment rides and rider skills workshops, including theory sessions led by experienced motorcycle patrol officers.
Recommendations to take further training are often the outcomes of the assessment rides.
The value of the scheme is acknowledged by many motor insurance companies, who offer a discount on premiums to riders who have completed the programme.
The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has approved a national syllabus for guidance to forces on the content, structure and management of BikeSafe activities. BikeSafe has a ten-point approach to reducing motorcycle casualties
The “Shiny Side Up” campaign brings together the East Midlands group of local authorities and Nottinghamshire Police.
Shiny Side UpThe campaign is designed to persuade sports bike riders, who figure predominantly in the region’s accident statistics, to look at their attitudes and behaviour. Previous attempts to persuade these riders to attend training sessions did not meet with great success.
The campaign addresses the attitude and behaviour of the sports bike rider rather than promoting training. Campaign elements include an innovative video, Fatal Attraction.
The video has a mix of racing insights and riding skills and includes thoughtprovoking messages featuring British Super Bike champion, John Reynolds. Local police have enhanced their presence on the specific roads commonly attractive to riders and roadside messages are used to target both riders and motorists, backed up by a prominent presence at the nearby Donnington race track on race days.
Shiny Side UpThe campaign was recognised with the Prince Michael International Road Safety Award in 2003.
Shiny Side Up Partnership
Warwickshire Police’s Scootersafe campaign teams up with scooter dealers to offer new scooter buyers a free one-to-one ride-out with a member of the force’s BikeSafe team.
Scootersafe has also been taken into Warwickshire County schools (Year 10 pupils).
Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Safety Camera Partnership’s “Blind Faith” campaign features an eye-catching display depicting a crashed motorcycle. At large gatherings of riders this display attracts the attention of sports bike riders who are then encouraged by staff on the stand to take training.
The North East region, led by Stockton Borough Council, has introduced Handle It Or Lose It, a campaign heavily based on consumer research that is being adopted in other areas.
Handle it or Lose It Funding has come from local authority budgets, safety camera partnerships and the Highways Agency.
This campaign, being rolled out nationally, includes:
Gloucestershire County Council uses a “THINK!” liveried bike to enhance awareness of safer riding among drivers and riders in the county.
The county’s Motorcycle Safety Coordinator takes the message out to road users at events, group meetings and dealerships.
Working with major local employers the co-ordinator assists with training of those employees who use motorcycles to travel to work – in support of employers ’Travel Plans (Chapter 3).
The coordinator also delivered a programme to engage the 15-17 year age group about moped and scooter issues, primarily via schools and colleges, but also by a concerted enforcement operation with a follow up workshop for riders who have a poor attitude to safety – theirs and other people’s. A series of roadside boards on identified routes feature the “fatal four” for motorcycle riders – speed, control, corners and overtaking.
Devon County Council’s “Bringing Bikers Out of the Blind Spot” is a programme of initiatives designed to develop and run over a three-year period. It has been guided by hard-data research and by large-scale consultation with riders in and around the county.
Devon Paper and online questionnaires were used alongside an innovative online forum that allowed riders to exchange views and ideas. As a result, three new education and training courses were developed and field tested with local riders before launch, along with:
South Gloucestershire Council have sought to raise awareness about the presence and vulnerability of motorcyclists and to promote safe and responsible riding. In a bid to address the number of motorcycle accidents involving “looked but did not see”, and recognising the fact that motorcyclists are not always at fault it launched a campaign to target other road users by:
South Gloucestershire CouncilThe third sign shows the number of motorcycle accidents in the vicinity. According to a survey undertaken by the council shortly after the installation of the signs, more than half of those who had seen the signs agreed that they had made them more aware of motorcycles.
The campaign also tried to engage 15-17 year old motorcyclists, who feature significantly in accident statistics, and to target potential young riders using:
South Gloucestershire Council• Advertising in local cinemas.
Opportunities should be taken in any campaign to educate other drivers on the presence and vulnerability of motorcycles.
This is especially of value in urban situations where another driver is often at fault, for example, at priority junctions when the rider is on the main road and the other driver is emerging from the side road.
Similarly, any driver or rider training programme run or sponsored by a local authority should have included an element of vulnerable road user appreciation.