Riders have been urged to wear all their gear and take a riding course in the wake of a “horror start to the year”, particularly in Victoria where the motorcyclist toll is 19.
But the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries is also calling on all road users to “work together to help ensure the safety of motorcyclists”.
“Tragically, 19 motorcyclists have died on Victorian roads alone this year. This is unprecedented on Victoria’s roads and must be addressed,” FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber says.
“It is recognised that motorcyclists are a vulnerable road user group, but this does not need to translate into such a tragic outcome.
“As we begin the third month of the year, the FCAI is calling for all road users to be responsible on the road.
“For motorcyclists, this means wearing protective clothing and helmets when you are riding your motorcycle. It also means refreshing your training and riding skills if you’re a return rider.
“Protective clothing and helmets serve an important role in protecting a rider if they are in an accident.”
While the Victorian figures look bad, it should be noted that at least five of the fatals were unlicensed riders and two were on stolen bikes.
Therefore, it makes more sense for police to spend their time checking number plates and licences rather than setting up speed traps.
Meanwhile, the FCAI is not putting all the onus on riders to act responsibility.
“For all road users, being responsible means being aware of your surroundings. This includes checking your blind spots for motorcycles when you are driving light or heavy vehicles,” Tony says.
He points out that motorcycles are a key mode of transportation across Australia, helping to ease traffic congestion and providing many Australians with a cost-effective mode of transport.
“All road users need to take responsibility and look after the safety of themselves and others on the road,” he says.
“Motorcyclists, in particular, should understand that as a vulnerable road user they must be extra vigilant—plan your path through traffic and keep yourself well protected.
“We’re asking all road users to watch out for each other and, in particular, watch out for motorcycles. Together, we can make our roads safer.”