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North west road safety initiative RideSafe BackSafe and the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) are heralding their Rider Assessment Scheme a great success after nearly 150 motorcyclists  completed the courses.

The series of one day events were held monthly from April to October in Chorley, Lancashire and primarily appealed to full motorcycle licence holders wishing to improve their riding skills with help from advanced riding assessors. The format included an interactive theory session about the challenges that motorcyclists face as vulnerable road users and a one-to-one appraisal for every rider after an observed ride on local roads.

North west Regional Groups Co-ordinator for the IAM, Ian Marginson, explains; "Motorcyclists came to us from Lancashire, Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Cumbria and further afield and the feedback at the end of each day was always good. 90% of riders were men, although we are seeing the number of women who take part increase steadily each year. The cost of the scheme was just £20 per person and nearly half of participants also signed up for the IAM’s ‘Skills For Life’ course to improve their riding skills even further. RideSafe BackSafe has played an integral part by promoting the scheme and making an introductory presentation about how they aim to reduce casualties on the road. It has worked really well in 2010 and we are all keen to expand this next year“.

Nearly 20% of all fatal and serious injury casualties involved in road traffic collisions are motorcyclists and yet, they make up less than one percent of all road users.                                                                                                                  

RideSafe BackSafe Spokesperson, Karen Delaney, continues; “Other road users need to ‘think bike’ and ‘think biker’, but we can also help motorcyclists directly by giving them easy and affordable access to schemes such as this to develop their riding skills and improve their well-being on the roads. We would like to continue working with the IAM in 2011 and have a few new ideas that would increase the appeal and the reach of this scheme“.

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