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Motorcycle Safety: Take Longer to Look for Bikes

August 29, 2014

For the whole of summer the government’s Think! road safety initiative have been running campaigns focusing on motorcyclists on the road, keeping them safe and providing them with tips to stay safe. The initial didn’t see campaign in July was also designed to ensure drivers have better awareness of motorcyclists and shockingly, Think! shared statistics which show motorcyclists make up just 1% of total road traffic but account for 19% of all fatalities on the roads.

Motorcyclists are a hazard for other vehicle drivers but for many, forgetting to check the blind spot or simply not looking for long enough to spot cyclist before pulling off, turning at junctions or changing lanes. This new campaign from the Department of Transport is designed to ensure all road users pay more attention to those around them. Motorcyclists are around 38 times more likely to be killed by road traffic accidents per mile ridden and even more worryingly, as many as 30 motorcyclists are killed or injured every day at junctions.

The didn’t See Campaign, which took place for four weeks had the main objective of reducing the number of motorcyclists involved in junction collisions, as this is the key danger area. The campaign included a video which showed motorcyclists with illuminated lights on racks attached behind them, showing just how easy it is to move into the path of a motorcyclist without realising.

Look. React Poster

Safety for Motorcyclists & All Road Users

There are many ways that motorcyclists can keep themselves safe. Think! and other motorcycling charities and road safety experts recommend riding defensively. Motorcycles who ride defensively are more alert and observant and have the ability to slow down appropriately if the unexpected happens. It is also recommended that motorcyclists seek out further safety training to give themselves the additional confidence they may be missing. Wearing the right clothing and the best possible helmet may also provide the additional protection in the event of an accident.

From other road users’ perspectives, there is plenty of advice too. The most simple advice around is simply to take your time and look. Spending more time specifically looking for bikes can save lives and equally keeping your distance when driving behind a bike also gives you time to react safely. It is integral to double check for bikes when changing lanes and also at the most common accident spots, junctions.

Motorcyclists may only make up a small percentage of the road users in the UK but this doesn’t mean they can be ignored. As a personal injury specialist we deal with many road traffic accidents on a weekly basis and those involving motorcyclists are treated with the same degree of importance and care.  We hope this government initiative helps more people realise the safety measures to keep in mind on the roads.