The Motorcycle Industry in Europe announces the Industry's Plan for Action. The Plan represents the Industry's approach to developing an integrated European policy for safer motorcycling.
In addition, ACEM formally publishes the MAIDS Report. This Motorcycle Accident In-Depth Study is a significant step towards a greater understanding of motorcycle casualties and represents a vital contribution to the development of properly informed and worthwhile casualty reduction measures.
Both the Plan for Action and the MAIDS Report represent significant contributions towards the European Commission's initiative to save 25,000 lives.
PTWs' valuable contribution to individual mobility and traffic congestion in Europe does not prevent PTW riders from being one of the most vulnerable groups of road users. The lack of knowledge on the causes and the mechanisms of road accidents involving injuries to PTW users was a major concern for all parties. Recognising this, the Motorcycle Industry with the support of the European Commission and other partners conducted the MAIDS study to understand and further improve the safety conditions of this valuable mode of transport.
Among several major findings, the MAIDS research showed that:
- the cause of the very large majority of PTW accidents collected in the study were found to be human error. The most significant factor was a failure to see PTWs within the traffic environment, due to lack of driver attention, temporary view obstructions or the low conspicuity of the PTW;
- travelling and impact speeds for all PTW categories were found to be quite low, most often below 50 km/h. There were relatively few cases in which excess speed was an issue related to accident causation;
- unlicensed PTW operators who were illegally riding PTWs that required a licence, were also found to be at greater risk of being involved in an accident when compared to licensed PTW riders;
- the object most frequently struck in an accident was a passenger car. The second most frequently struck object was the roadway itself, either as the result of a single vehicle accident or of an attempt to avoid a collision with an OV;
- whilst each sampling area contained both urban and rural areas, the majority of the accidents took place in an urban environment;
- road side barriers presented an infrequent but substantial danger to PTW riders, causing serious lower extremity and spinal injuries as well as head injuries.
Jacques Compagne, ACEM Secretary General, said: "The MAIDS study reveals that there are many different aspects related to PTW safety but above all, underlines the needs for collective and integrated action. I can assure you that ACEM members are willing to commit themselves to work with the Commission and governments to create positive and worthwhile solutions to motorcycle safety concerns".
A major conference on November 24th will draw together public and private sector organisations representing all PTW stakeholders, the European Commission and Parliament. The conference will discuss the Industry motorcycle safety initiatives to date and will then discuss the key findings from the MAIDS report, which have led to the development of the Plan for Action. Finally, it will present the Industry major commitments.
Jacques Compagne said : "The Plan for Action will present the Industry initiatives and propositions to improve PTW safety. This is a major commitment from ACEM members. We truly hope that this Plan for Action will launch an integrated European safety policy for motorcycling as PTWs offer a valuable alternative to solve Europe growing congestion problems and represent a passionate leisure and lifestyle."