There is usually a spike in road accidents over the Easter holidays as traffic volumes increase and riders have more time to go riding.
Rather than preaching about being safe and responsible, we’ve asked several motorcycle luminaries for their road safety tips and Easter messages.
Double demerit points
And remember, in NSW, ACT and Western Australia, double demerit points apply over Easter from April 13 to 25.
Easter road safety message
2003 World Supersport champion and MotoGP winner Chris Vermeulen
I think any time of the year it’s important to be safe of the roads and to enjoy motorcycling but Easter is one of the busiest times of the year for all road users so we all need to take more care than normal, be safe and not use the road as a race track. The weather can be unpredictable this time of the year too so as always ride to the conditions. Happy Easter, enjoy your ride and don’t eat too much chocolate!
Motorcycle Riders’ Association of Queensland
The MRAQ encourages all those riders who will be using their motorcycles over the Easter period to enjoy the time spent but to ensure that the enjoyment does not cloud the necessary good judgement required.
There should be three main considerations particularly at any time when riders may be using their motorcycles for longer periods than they are normally used to.
Fatigue: will slow reaction time to situation that may require rapid response. Consider the the amount of time that you will be riding and ensure that you do not exceed your personal limit. Warning signs include body soreness, sore or dry eyes and a lack of mental alertness. Take a break, freshen up and relieve any stiff or sore muscles and joints before continuing and break any excessively long rides into manageable smaller sections.
Know your limits: Consider your personal limitations and ride within them. There are very fewMoto GP riders in the general population so always consider your own ability before taking on any ride and stay within these limits. Don’t exceed your own ability just to attempt to keep up with someone else who may have greater capabilities than you. Ride for enjoyment, not for endangerment.
Vehicle condition: Ensure your machinery is in good serviceable condition. Items that require particular attention include adequate tyre tread and pressure, correct oil and coolant levels, correctly adjusted drive chains or belts and proper brakes function, Look after your machine and it should get you there and back without problem.
Veteran journalist and videographer Mick Matheson of Phantom2Media
Easter brings a change in routine — a very long weekend away from the daily grind. What we never factor in is that the change in routine happens on the road as well as in our work schedule, which I reckon is why so many people don’t deal well with Easter rides. One mental tool will enable you to deal with both major differences between Easter traffic and regular weekend traffic: patience.
Adopting a little Zen as you ride will help you keep you cool, calm approach to riding while drivers around you spiral out of control (hopefully not literally!).
The more crowded roads make travel slower, so accept this as inevitable. The holiday is meant to be relaxing but when traffic conditions turn that notion on its head, some drivers lose the plot. Accept this as inevitable, too. From there you can keep the delays and the fools from spoiling your day, and the ride remains the enjoyable escape it should be.
Oh, and one more thing: find the back roads and leave the busy highways to the rest of them.
Steve Spalding, RACQ Head of Technical and Safety Policy
Motorcycle safety must remain a focus for everyone, not just in South East Queensland where many of Motorbikewriter’s readers get to enjoy our great roads and weather, but wherever you are. Whether riding for daily transport, commuting, as part of your work or just to get out and enjoy some great riding time over the Easter period keep safety top of mind.
Far too many riders continue to push themselves too far on the road and end up in a situation that changes their lives. Of course there’s always incidents where others have done the wrong thing, but as riders we have to ride defensively and within our limitations. Ultimately we have to take the responsibility that regardless of road conditions, bad weather or the actions of other road users, we have to make sure our ride ends safely every time.
So, if you’re lucky enough to get a few days off work over the Easter holiday, and can get out to enjoy some riding, ride safe and remind your mates they need to ride safe too!
Harley-Davidson Australia and New Zealand marketing manager Adam Wright
If you’re out on two wheels over the Easter break, remember it’s the journey and not the destination. So please ride carefully and be respectful to all your fellow road users. Everyone at Harley-Davidson wishes you and your families a safe and happy Easter.
I.C.Emergency inventor Tony Walton
Easter is a great time to take a few days and go riding. It’s also a time when we see a big spike in bike accidents. Accidents happen, but more accidents happen over the Easter period.
It’s essential that all riders carry relevant identification at all times. having info on your phone isn’t enough because phones often get smashed in accidents. Particularly bike accidents. If something happens and you do come off, it’s vital that emergency responders know who to contact if you’re unconscious.
The information you should carry is WHO to contact in an emergency and their mobile phone numbers, ANY medications you may be taking and any medical issues you have. This info will assist emergency department staff.
Motorcycle Riders Association of the ACT
The MRA ACT encourages all road users to keep safe this coming Easter weekend by looking out for other road users, and riding to the conditions. Particularly, keep a safe three-second distance, watch for motorcyclists and scooters, and use common sense. We’d like all road users to arrive at their destinations safely, to spend time with family and friends, and to treat all other road users with courtesy. Initiatives such as the continuing lane filtering trial improve safety and convenience for all motorists and respect on the roads protects us all.
BMW Motorrad Australia general manager Andreas Lundgren
The Easter break provides us all with the perfect opportunity to get out on the open road and enjoy life. Over the holiday period ride at your own pace, you are the one in control; don’t let others influence your decisions. Have fun and enjoy the unique freedom that life on two wheels offers. Make life a ride!