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NEWS RELEASE · 18th March 2010
Ministry of Public Safety
Additional motorcycle safety measures recommended by a B.C. Coroners Service (BCCS) death review panel are helping to inform legislation and regulatory changes currently being considered by the Province, said Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Kash Heed.

"It's clear that with more riders on the road, motorcycle safety is an area where improvements need to be made, and that's what this government is going to do," said Heed. "These findings and recommendations from the B.C. Coroners Service further support our ongoing work to protect motorcycle riders by reducing the risks they currently face."

Between 2000 and 2007, 286 motorcycle related deaths were reported to the BCCS. In light of the rising number of fatalities, B.C.'s chief coroner convened a death review panel on motorcycle fatalities in November 2008.

The panel made nine recommendations aimed at preventing similar tragedies in the future including:

* Require mandatory industry certification for all motorcycle helmets.
* Establish a graduated-licence program for new riders.
* Implement a zero-tolerance blood-alcohol policy for new riders.
* Issue a different-coloured licence plate to motorcyclists who hold a learner's licence.
* Re-evaluate existing standards for training schools and instructor certification.
* Expand the scope of coroner's investigations involving motorcycle deaths to include more data and compile it in a specific section for better analysis in the future.

The recommendations were directed to the Office of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles (OSMV), the BCCS and the Insurance Corporation of B.C. (ICBC).

A statistical review was carried out on all 286 deaths and a more in-depth analysis was conducted on six of the cases. Panel members included representatives from the BCCS, police, ICBC, OSMV, B.C. Coalition of Motorcyclists, B.C. and Canada safety councils, Motorcycle and Moped Industry Council, B.C. training institutions and the riding community.

Over the past two years, the OSMV has collaborated with the BCCS, ICBC and police to develop a comprehensive approach to improve motorcycle safety based on a review of best practices in other jurisdictions, current research and consultations within the motorcycling community and industry.

The report is available online at: ons/index.htm.
Mr Ippel
Comment by steve on 20th March 2010
The only major work done on this subject in the USA is the Hurt Report, published in 1981 with data collected in Los Angeles and the surrounding rural areas.[6] There have been longstanding calls for a new safety study in the US, and Congress has provided the seed money for such a project, but as yet the remainder of the funding has not all been pledged.[7]

The Hurt Report concluded with a list of 55 findings, as well as several major recommendations for law enforcement and legislation. Among these, 75% of motorcycle accidents involved collision with another vehicle, usually a car. In the MAIDS report, the figure is 60%.

Other notable findings in the Hurt report (quoted below) were:[8]

* 75% of accidents were found to involve a motorcycle and a passenger vehicle, while the remaining 25% of accidents were single motorcycle accidents.
* "In the single vehicle accidents, motorcycle rider error was present as the accident precipitating factor in about two-thirds of the cases, with the typical error being a slide-out and fall due to overbraking or running wide on a curve due to excess speed or under-cornering."
* In the multiple vehicle accidents, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcycle right-of-way and caused the accident in two-thirds of those accidents.
* The report's additional findings show that the wearing of appropriate gear, specifically, helmets and durable garment, mitigates crash injuries substantially.
* "Vehicle failure accounted for less than 3% of these motorcycle accidents, and most of those were single vehicle accidents where control was lost due to a puncture flat" and "Weather is not a factor in 98% of motorcycle accidents."
* "The failure of motorists to detect and recognize motorcycles in traffic is the predominating cause of motorcycle accidents...Conspicuity of the motorcycle is a critical factor in the multiple vehicle accidents, and accident involvement is significantly reduced by the use of motorcycle headlamps-on In daylight and the wearing of high visibility yellow, orange or bright red jackets."

I dont disagree with your thoughts on "beanies" but the simple fact is, the vast majority of motorcyclists wear DOT/CSA motorcycle helmets and not beanies. No helmet will prevent serious injury when a car turns left in front of you and that is the major cause of MC fatalities.
As far as signing waivers? well-i can go down and buy, tomorrow, a 600 hp sports car with acceleration and handling that tops a formula one car of 20 years ago without any waiver or training. I can go snowmobiling in a known avalanche zone without a waiver and i can buy pretty much a real race car (as long as i can afford it) and operate it with impunity without a waiver. Will you also require said waiver for anyone who goes skiing? rock climbing? parachuting? how about smokers?
where do you draw the line?
So!!!!/An opinion.
Comment by J Ippel on 19th March 2010
No where in the text did I read that 25% of accidents were caused by bike riders, and the rest caused by someone putting on make-up, texting, drying their finger nails, and the list goes on.
I would respectfully suggest that most injuries suffered by MC riders are head injuries, most of which could have been avoided if they had been wearing a Helmut of substance, instead of something that looks like a porcelain pi$$pot, and offers about the same protection.
I sincerely hope that the government institutes some very rigid standards concerning Motorcycle riders and the use of helmuts. Why should safe, concientious drivers pay more premiums because some individual will not take the proper precautions to protect his health and well being while riding a motorcycly??????
If you want to wear a beanie as a helmut, sign a waiver that you will not claim for medical coverage, or long term disability benefits because of your own stupidity.
You are the author of your own misfortunes.
Comment by Steve on 19th March 2010
Lets see, 25% of accidents are caused by the rider. That means 75% are caused by the car driver; left turns, putting on makeup, balancing cheque books, watching dvd's or on the phone-so, in typical government fashion, we've decided that a new colour licence plate will make it all better, and the rest of problem, that is, the majority of it, we'll ignore

I'm okay with a graduated program, that is, like they have in most of Europe-limiting horsepower for the first few years of learning. That eliminates a 16 year old or his parents from buying some 600 cc hyper bike to learn to ride on. It also prevents the "Wild Hog" syndrome. The lawyer/wanna be rider who can afford a 1000 lb /98 cube Road King for a first bike.

Anyone who has ridden and survived for any length of time has already learned to ride as though you were invisible and no amount of government meddling will provide greater protection.