The Guidelines

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Rural motorcycle accidents often involve no other vehicles, and frequently occur on bends.

Check for:
• Location of service covers and their skid resistance

Road markings. The reduced effectiveness of motorcycle headlights makes the night-time retro-reflectivity performance of road markings in rural areas especially important.

• Cross-sectional profile. This can be a safety issue for all road users, but can be particularly unforgiving for motorcyclists.

Cornering on a motorcycle, especially at rural road speeds, is an activity that involves a degree of planning, skill and technique. If the cross-sectional profile of the road does not conform to expectations, the rider may not have time to make the necessary adjustments and may crash.

• The ‘“clear zone:” on the outside of bends is especially pertinent in the rural environment.
Too much visibility to the right on high-speed approaches to rural roundabouts.This is a safety issue for all road users and is not catered for in the current design standard. It has two implications for motorcyclists:
• When the motorcycle is the approaching vehicle, it can encourage excessive entry speed, leading to loss-ofcontrol accidents.
• When the motorcycle is the circulating vehicle, it can encourage drivers of other motorised vehicles to use excessive approach speeds, increasing the chance of drivers “looking but not seeing” and an enteringcirculating accident.

Poor “offside deflection” on rural, high-speed roundabout approaches, especially on dual carriageways.

The current design standard gives mandatory values for deflection based on entry path curvature, a line intended to emulate the easiest route through a junction, ignoring lane markings.

This works well when vehicles can choose such a path; however, under modern traffic conditions riders (and drivers) often use the offside lane when the nearside lane is occupied by slower vehicles.This can lead some drivers and riders to collide with the central island. Implementing the advice in section 7.17 of the standard should reduce this problem (DTp 1993).