Motorbikers might soon have to wear gloves or face fine

MOTORCYCLISTS and moped riders may soon be required by law to wear gloves, and they could lose extra points for not wearing a helmet.

They will also be encouraged to fit airbags, as part of the traffic authority’s draft plans for cutting down on road injuries and fatalities.

Those seeking to get a moped or motorbike licence will also have to take nearly twice as many theory classes soon: 14 hours instead of the standard eight.

The additional six hours will focus on risk factors, protection measures and riding techniques.

Not wearing a helmet could, in the near future, involve a loss of four licence points rather than three, but bikers who take additional, approved courses on road-safety and awareness, whether or not they have committed an offence, may be able to gain another two points.

The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) aims to raise awareness among bikers about how to dress for safety: knee and elbow pads, back and shoulder protectors, proper footwear, plus resilient covering for legs, as well as a jacket providing sufficient cushioning in the event of a collision.

Figures from the DGT show that since a concerted effort was made to clamp down on riders without helmets, in 2006, there has been a dramatic drop in the number who do fail to use the correct headgear.

But of the 241 bikers killed on inter-urban roads last year, 10 were not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

Motorcyclists make up 21% of all road-crash deaths across the board, and on all types of road and terrain: 359 last year, and 147 so far this year.

The DGT wants to cut these figures down, and its Road Safety Special Measures Plan for Motorcyclists 2019-2020 includes 17 new strategies.

One of these includes making it mandatory to wear gloves while riding, on pain of a possible fine, or even loss of licence points, in line with traffic laws in a handful of other European Union countries, including France.

The National Association of Two-Wheeled Industry Traders (ANESDOR) and the Mutual Motorbikers’ Association, have given their input, drawing up the 17 potential, future strategies, and both organisations stressed the importance of gloves and suitable clothing for motorcycling.

They also believe the future of safe riding lies in fitting airbags to bikes, which is an accessory, relatively unknown to the general public and normally associated with cars.

Both groups say their use in two-wheeled sports is growing, and is raising awareness. Also, prices are now coming down, and they are likely to continue to do so as more and more riders buy airbags.

When they were first launched, airbags for bikes cost over €1,000, but they can now be found for between €300-600.


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Posted by on Aug 2 2019. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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