Bikers to take it down a gear

Motorcyclists are being urged to think of the consequences of taking risks when biking, by being encouraged to ‘roll off the throttle’.

Road Safety Scotland (part of Transport Scotland), Police Scotland and the Scottish Government are working together to help reduce the number of motorcycle casualties by encouraging bikers to reduce their speed a little after the traditional summer season got under way last weekend.

With motorbikes only accounting for 1% of road traffic but 12% of road deaths, this year’s campaign aims to raise awareness of safer riding and best practice when out on the road and help reduce the number of bike-related incidents across the country.

Latest figures reveal that male bikers account for 90% of all motorcycle casualties and almost a third are aged 40 - 49. However, the “roll off” message is relevant to all motorcyclists in Scotland.

Superintendent Iain Murray, head of road policing at Police Scotland and a recreational biker himself, said “With the Easter break highlighting the start of the biking season, it’s a popular time for both experienced riders and those returning to a motorbike to get out and explore the country on two wheels.

“Throughout this campaign, we want to encourage safer, considerate biking behaviour among riders, particularly during the summer months.

‘‘With statistics, unfortunately, showing most motorcycle casualties occur during the day and in good weather, and with more motorcyclists getting their bikes out at the start of summer, it’s important to take it easy in all conditions.

“Most serious and fatal motorcycle collisions happen in rural areas involving higher speed limits so our message is clear - when you’re out on your bike over the summer make sure you make it back to your loved ones.

‘‘Roll off the throttle - don’t risk it for their sake.’’”

Over 85% of all motorcycle incidents happen during the biking season which lasts from April to September.

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