Biker News - Regularly updated

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Category: Safety & Compensation

  1. Motorcycle Accidents – who is usually to blame?

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    The Highway Code contains a section dedicated to a class of road users described as 'vulnerable.' Vulnerable road users are 'Road users requiring extra care.'

    Rule 204 defines the most vulnerable road users as 'pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and horse riders.'

    The aim of the rules relating to this group of road users is to warn motorists of the need to take extra special care in situations in which they encounter or may encounter any of the specified group members. Motorists should exercise caution to be alive to the possibility of motorcycles:

    · Coming out of junctions

    · At roundabouts

    · Overtaking (the motorist)

    · Filtering through traffic

    · Before the motorist emerges from a junction

    · When the motorist is turning off the road

    · When changing direction or lanes

    The rules also advise motorists to:

    · Check mirrors and blind spots

    · Give plenty of room to motorcyclists when passing them and on uneven, oily or wet roads or those full of potholes or where there are other obstacles such as drain covers.

    We can't fault the aims of the Highway Code. However, something isn't working. Otherwise, motorcyclists would not continue to have the highest casualty rates per mile travelled of all road users in the UK.

    Why are more motorcyclists killed or injured (per mile travelled) in road traffic accidents than any other road user type?

    1. Bikers don't benefit from the protection afforded to those who travel in motor vehicles.

    2. Whilst bikers themselves are vulnerable road users, their mode of transport is more powerful than any other. Most bikes are more powerful than the majority of cars. Nevertheless, the bike rider's personal vulnerability is the same as that of cyclists and pedestrians. Accordingly, road traffic accidents involving motorcyclists carry a high likelihood of serious injury to the rider.

    3. In 2017, RoSPA, the road safety charity, produced a research paper that drew on other, in-depth studies into motorcycle accidents. The research paper concluded motorcycle accidents have different 'characteristics' to those involving other road users. Motorcycle accidents are likely to include, amongst their causes:

    a) failure to give way at road junctions (by motorists)

    b) loss of control (by motorcyclists) on bends

    c) overtaking manoeuvres (by a motorcyclist)

    What are the most common types of motorcycle accident?

    1. The biker is usually at fault

    · Losing control on bends (particularly on country roads). Excess speed is often a significant factor in this type of accident
    · Riding too fast, losing control and colliding with traffic bollards and other road fixures
    · Switching lanes when unsafe to do so.
    · Rider error
    · Overtaking other vehicles
    · Drink or drug influence

    2. The motorist is most commonly at fault

    · Failing to give way at a road junction
    · Moving out from a line of stationary traffic into the path of an overtaking motorcycle
    · Changing lanes
    · Filtering
    · Misjudging riders speed
    · Motorist running into the back of a stationary motorcycle
    · Dooring – driver or passenger of a motor vehicle opening their door into the path of a passing motorcycle
    · Motorist failing to leave sufficient space to overtake motorcyclist safely.

    Other causes of motorcycle accidents are:

    · Weather conditions – which party is to blame for an accident between a motorist and a biker in lousy weather-will depend on the accident's particular circumstances. Going too fast for the conditions is often a factor.
    · Potholes or oil leaks – again, much will depend on the individual circumstances of the incident.

    Who's to blame for the majority of motorcycle accidents?   Motorcycle Accident Claims, No Win, No Fee, personal injury solicitor

    In-depth studies of motorcycle accidents suggest that motorists are to blame for over 70% of road traffic accidents involving motor vehicles and motorcyclists. Most motorcycle accidents occur at road junctions.

    Should you get injured in a motorcycle accident, whatever the circumstances, it's a sensible idea to contact an experienced No Win, No Fee, personal injury solicitor who has expertise in motorcycle accident claims. They will be able to advise you on whether you have reasonable prospects of winning a claim if you decide to bring one against the other motorist involved (or the local council or highway authority in the case of a pothole claim).

     

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  2. Predictions of wintery weather are bad news for local roads

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    Weather forecasts of freezing air to sweep over the UK by the end of October could prove to be bad news for those local roads that have not be well-maintained believes the Road Surface Treatments Association (RSTA).

    Weather forecasters WXCHARTS are predicting that Artic air from a north-westerly direction will sweep over the UK and see temperatures drop to freezing lows of 0C by the end of this month. Meanwhile, the Met Office has also predicted that north-western parts of the UK could see snow falling by the end October.

    This is bad news for those highway authorities who have failed to properly maintain their road networks and for the motorists who use them as the freezing temperatures could result in more potholes.

    Potholes are caused by water or snow freezing in cracks in the road surface. The expansion of ice results in damage and breaking up of the road surface which is made worse by repeated freeze-thaw cycles. The late start to the preventative maintenance season in some authorities due to Covid-19 led to smaller programmes being completed this year, with many unable to carry out all their planned, preventative maintenance. This is likely to lead to more expensive reactive patching over the winter.

    “Cold icy weather has a detrimental impact upon roads resulting in more potholes where planned proactive maintenance has not been carried out, particularly where budget has meant smaller programmes than required by carriageway asset lifecycles over a number of years ” warned Paul Boss RSTA chief executive.

    Boss called upon the government and local authorities to work together and invest the necessary funding to carry out planned programmes of road maintenance rather than expensive reactive pothole repair: “Patch-and-mend defies economic logic”, said Boss. “It costs only £3 to £5 per m2 to surface dress and maintain a road but costs on average over £50 per m2 to repair potholes. The expensive, emergency patch and mend repair of potholes is not a sensible use of highway budgets unlike the implementation of planned programmes of maintenance.”

     

  3. Five Things You Need to Know About Used Bike Registration

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    Are you considering buying a used motorbike? If so, you need to know the following five things.

    The Bike Must Be Taxed Before You Can Ride it

    Before you can ride your bike on the road, it must be taxed. To do that, you need the motorcycle’s reference number from the V5C registration certificate. The V5C must be in your name. You will also need to meet all other legal obligations before you are permitted to take your bike on the road. But once the bike is yours, you can spruce it up to suit your personal taste any way that you want. Perhaps you would like a respray, or maybe you would like to make it more personal by adding a private registration plate. You can find over 40 million personalised, cherished, and private number plates at absolutereg.co.uk.

    The Bike Can Be Registered to You Online

    When the seller of a used motorcycle has a V5C, he or she can register the vehicle to you online or by post. When the seller uses the online registration process, the DVLA will update the vehicle record immediately. The seller must then fill in the new keeper slip and give it to you. The original V5C must be destroyed. The DVLA will then send you a new V5C, in your name, within three to five days.   Five Things You Need to Know About Used Bike Registration - Motorcycle

    The Bike Can Be Registered to You by Post

    If the seller registers by post instead of online, the seller needs to complete section two of a new-style logbook, or section six if they have the older style. He or she, and you must sign the declaration in section eight of an older style logbook too. The seller must fill in the new keeper slip and give it to you, and send the V5C to the DVLA. You will receive a new V5C between two and four weeks thereafter. 

    It Is Possible to Register a Bike without a Valid V5C

    The DVLA advises you not to purchase a motorcycle when the seller does not have a V5C. However, if you do have a bike that does not have a V5C, you need to complete and submit form V62. The form is available to download on the UK government website. You can also obtain it from any Post Office branch. Send the completed form to the DVLA with the new keeper slip that you have obtained from the motorcycle’s seller.

    You Need to Check Whether the Bike Is Stolen

    When you buy a used bike, it is not only important to ensure it has a valid V5C registration. It is also essential you check that the details of the bike and the seller match those on the document. Also make sure the engine and frame numbers match, and check the V5C includes a watermark to ensure it is a genuine document. Those checks will prevent you from buying a stolen bike. You can run an online check on the registration plate of a motorbike to discover whether it has been previously written off or stolen, or whether there is outstanding finance on it.

  4. IAM RoadSmart to drive forward tyre safety awareness

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    IAM RoadSmart, the UK's leading road safety charity with a focus on improving driving and riding skills, is an official supporter of TyreSafe, the UK’s not-for-profit tyre safety awareness organisation.  IAM RoadSmart to drive forward tyre safety awareness

    Formed in 1956, IAM RoadSmart has 60 years experience in making Britain’s roads safer by improving driver and rider skills through coaching and education. With more than 200 groups nationwide and 7000 drivers and riders actively participating in its acclaimed and widely-recognised courses, IAM RoadSmart is considered the leading advanced driver training provider in the UK. Having direct contact with thousands of motorists every day, a significant presence in the media and being a respected source of information for road safety policymakers and stakeholders,

    IAM RoadSmart CEO, Sarah Sillars, OBE and Hon FIMI, said: “IAM RoadSmart’s mission is to improve driving and riding skills to help reduce the number of accidents and incidents on Britain’s roads. Over the course of the charity’s illustrious 60-year history, our trainers and coaches have enhanced the skills of nearly half-a-million drivers and we have ambitions to increase the number of participants through a broader offering. Educating drivers and riders on all aspects of road safety will remain an essential part of that, and access to TyreSafe’s expertise and materials will be a considerable asset.”

    Stuart Jackson, chairman, TyreSafe, said: IAM RoadSmart is not only the pre-eminent provider of driver training in the UK, it’s also one of the most respected names in the automotive industry. Its official support for TyreSafe reflects the growing number of organisations acknowledging the need to raise the tyre safety awareness agenda among Britain’s motorists. Tyres are one of a vehicle’s primary safety features and need regular maintenance checks to ensure they are roadworthy - we welcome IAM RoadSmart’s support in spreading this message to Britain’s motorists.”

    TyreSafe raises awareness of the dangers of defective and illegal tyres.
    The not-for-profit organisation recommends drivers check their tyres’ pressure, condition and tread depth at least once a month and before long journeys, and offers advice and information relevant to all motorists. 

  5. The Most Dangerous Roads for Bikes in the East Midlands

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    Though bikers make up one percent of road traffic, they comprise 19 percent of all fatal traffic accidents according to the Department of Transport. There were 36.7 vehicles licensed for use in Great Britain and 83 percent, or 30.5 million, were cars. It goes without saying that motorbike riders need to take precautions to avoid accidents, but they should pay extra attention on specific roads.  The Most Dangerous Roads for Bikes in the East Midlands

    In addition the Road Crash Index, which has been created by the Road Safety Foundation in collaboration with the insurer Ageas to map out the risk of serious injury and death on Britain’s roads, there are new studies coming out about the safety of roads.

    The Road Crash Index reported that half of all of the United Kingdom’s road death concentrated on ten percent of roads—specially A roads outside of city limits and motorways. Since road death deaths increased in 2016, private entities are using the government figures to find out which roads are the most dangerous.

    Accident Studies A new study from the insurance company Swinton has analysed accident data provided by the government to reveal which roads are the most dangerous for bikers. The data from 2017 revealed that nine out of the most dangerous roads are in London. The other is in Wales. Though they aren’t the most dangerous roads in the country, the study put together a list of the most hazardous roads in the East Midlands.

    Dangerous Roads in the East Midlands

    Of the top ten most dangerous road in the East Midlands, five are in Nottinghamshire. These include Nottingham A6002, A6130, and A611, all of which are in the top five most dangerous roads in the region. Other roads on this top ten include Leicester A563 and A594, High Peak A57, Mansfield A60, East Northamptonshire A6, and Mansfield A6009. Number one most risky road the list for the region is Worcester A38.

    The Details

    The figures from the study show that 584 accidents occurred in the East Midlands during the year 2017. This was 400 more than in the North East, which has the title of least dangerous region for motor bikers. It has a stunning 3,000 less than London. According to MoneyPug, the site used to compare the best bike insurance, the accident rate also declined by six percent. Still the study showed that a staggering one in three motorbike accidents are serious or even fatal. It also showed that Friday is the most dangerous day of the week for motorcyclists and midday Sunday was the most common time for fatal accidents. 

    The Safest Roads

    While the North East is much less dangerous than London and East Midlands, it is not the safest place for motorbike riders in the country. The Road Crash Index has determined that Dunbartonshire has the country’s safest roads. It ranked the highest, with a 32 percent reduction in serious crashes between the years 2010 and 2012 as well 2013 and 2015.

    Not the Most Dangerous, but Not the Safest

    The roads in the East Midlands are not as dangerous as the roads in South Glamorgan, which ranked last of 78 counties. Serious incidents and fatal accidents have increased 27 percent. Still, they are far from the safest. It is the hope of insurance companies like Swinton that if we can raise awareness about the country’s most dangerous roads for cars and bikers alike, we can avoid tragedies and insurance claims. Local politicians have also began pushing for improvements on some of the more dangerous roads.

    Road Safety for Bikers

    It is important for bikers anywhere to be prudent about road safety since they are inherently more dangerous than cars. If you are properly trained, you are also a lot less likely to get into an accident. It is best to have the necessary experience before tackling the most infamous roads in the East Midlands, or anywhere else for that matter. For bikers, it is crucial to be on the defensive. Cars can hurt bikers a lot more than bikers can harm people in cars. With the proper experience and adhering to traffic laws, bikers can avoid accidents on the region’s most dangerous roads and keep themselves safe.

    The Most Dangerous Roads for Bikes in the East Midlands