A coalition of motorcycling organisations have created a “Ride Covid Safe” white paper which has been welcomed across the industry.
As the UK begins to figure out what a post-lockdown world looks like, the motorcycling industry is starting to wonder where it fits in after the Covid-19 dust has settled.
Last month, a coalition of motorcycling organisations started to ask those tough questions. The coalition consisted of:
- The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG)
- The Vintage Motorcycle Club (VMCC)
- The Trail Riders Fellowship (TRF)
- The British Motorcycle Federation
They released a discussion paper which started to delve into how the motorcycling industry can begin to rebuild after three months of lockdown. The paper was written at the request of the four largest motorcycle clubs that are directly involved in interpreting Government guidance for 1.2 million motorcyclists.
In the paper, they examined:
- How motorcyclists can continue to ride safely by fully observing social distancing and other necessary public health measures.
- The ways in which the crisis is affecting motorcycling.
- The case for a simple code of guidance.
- How motorcycling can contribute to the future of transport as the country emerges from lockdown.
The paper was submitted to the Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps. Now, progress has been made and the support for the riding initiative is growing.
The Government is listening to motorcyclists
Following the white paper being issued, a further press release was released by the Motorcycle Action Group, on behalf of the coalition. In it, they detail how ministers are warming to the ongoing discussions around how motorcycles can be used post-lockdown.
Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Motorcycling Group, Chris Law MP, said:
I very much welcome this initiative and the partnership between the organisations which created it. Motorcycling does have an enormous role to play in any transport policy if we are to see a long term reduction in congestion and pollution, and the Parliamentary Motorcycle Group has long advocated this.
Rachel Maclean, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport) and MP for Redditch stated:
The Department’s guidance issued on 12 May refers to ‘Private cars and other vehicles’ as an alternative to using public transport, and encourages the public to ‘consider all other forms of transport before using public transport’.
This would include private vehicles such as motorcycles and mopeds where the journey to be made is appropriate.
Motorcycles are an important way of getting around, and we are working on a number of projects, including sorting out potholes, which are a problem for people on motorcycles and other two-wheeled vehicles. I encourage people to adopt the electric motorbike.
The Covid-19 Riders’ safety code
In their paper, the coalition admits that Covid-19 will remain a serious public health emergency for many months. With this in mind, they have developed a Covid-19 riders’ safety code for all members. The code is as follows:
- Plan your route carefully to avoid busy locations, traffic congestion and crowds.
- Only ride with a pillion if they are part of your household.
- Aim to be as self-sufficient as possible by taking all food, refreshments and other essentials with you.
- Follow Government guidance on groups. You must not travel in a group of more than two and when you stop, make sure that you stay sufficiently socially distanced from any who are not part of your household.
- Agree in advance what you are going to do if you have problems. Agree, for example, how to deal safely with any breakdowns or emergencies.
- Do not gather in large numbers with other motorcyclists. (There will be time for that when the present crisis is over.)
- Avoid cafes, but try to establish in advance where there will be essential facilities en route such as public conveniences.
- Try to limit the number of stops you make and wherever possible – stop in isolated places. Do not to stop or park in public car parks where you cannot be sure of maintaining adequate social distancing.
- Know the COVID-19 safe procedures to follow at filling stations or shops. Try to limit the number of fuel stops you make.
- Know what COVID-19 safety kit you are going to take with you, such as alcohol hand gel, masks, gloves, tissues, plastic bags, etc. Use it appropriately and safely.
- Make sure that your route is not so long and difficult that you cannot return home safely if things like the weather change suddenly. You must return home in the same day.
- Encourage other riders to be COVID safe at all times.
- Ride sensibly and with consideration for others.
- Be aware that, at present, the guidelines for leaving the house for other than essential reasons may be different in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
We at SorryMate welcome the talks between the Government and the motorcycling coalition. We believe that these discussions can aide coming out of lockdown safely and sensibly.
How can SorryMate help you?
If you have been knocked off your bike, it can often feel like there is no one to turn to, to help you get back on. SorryMate are there for bikers who need legal advice when they have been knocked off their bike by a car, injured themselves due to potholes or poor road surfaces, or when they have been involved in an accident with other road users or pedestrians.
We are bikers, just like you, and understand the distress an accident can have. We want to make our roads safer, and we go after those who don’t.
SorryMate deal exclusively with motorbike accident compensation claims. We are made up of a team of specialist personal injury motorcycling lawyers, registered with the SRA, that can help you recover your deserved compensation.
Find out today if you have a claim for compensation by completing an enquiry form or by calling 0800 6 300 301.
Full Riding Covid Safe White Paper (PDF) – https://bit.ly/2LqZSrt