RSA appeals to bikers
Motorcycles make up for less than two per cent of the total vehicle fleet yet accounted for 14 per cent of road deaths in 2013. That figure was up almost 70 per cent on the previous year and so far two motorcyclists have lost their lives on Irish roads this year.
With this in mind the Road Safety Authority (RSA) and An Garda Síochána are urging motorcyclists, scooter and moped users to bike safely on the roads this May Bank Holiday Weekend in the hopes of reversing the trend that saw as many bikers killed last year as pedestrians.
As part of the appeal the RSA and An Garda Síochána point out that research shows that motorcyclists are three times more likely to be killed on Irish roads than in any other EU country.
"Riding a motorbike can be an incredible experience and it gives a great sense of freedom. But motorcyclists are also among the most vulnerable road users," said Mr Leo Varadkar T.D., Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport. "Going full throttle represents a danger to others, and above all to yourself. Your attitude is absolutely critical in determining the likelihood of having a crash, so be bike safe this summer. Drivers also have a responsibility to always look out for motorcycles, and all motorists should look once for cars and twice for bikes."
The vast majority of motorcycle fatalities last year took place in the Dublin and greater Dublin area (counties Dublin, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow). In 16 out of the 22 fatalities, the motorcyclist was familiar with the local area and in the majority of cases the weather was dry, the road surface was also dry and the conditions were daylight with good visibility.
A provisional analysis of motorcycle deaths last year by the RSA and An Garda Síochána shows that there were four main factors behind these deaths:
1. A motorcyclist overtaking a vehicle turning right, resulting in the motorcyclist colliding with the side of the turning vehicle
2. A motorcyclist, while overtaking, colliding head on with an oncoming vehicle
3. A motorcyclist losing control while cornering and crossing into the path of an oncoming vehicle or colliding with a pole, or wall on the other side of the road
4. A driver failing to see a motorcyclist when turning, driving through a junction or joining a main road from a minor road and colliding with the motorcyclist
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