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MotoE Fire: The show must go on

MotoE testing for series has been suspended after a fire caused “major damages and losses“.

Devastating fire hits the Jerez circuit

The MotoE championship is due to kick off at Jerez at the start of May. However, that could come to an end thanks to a catastrophic fire last night at the circuit.

The fire broke out in a temporary garage unit. The source of the light at this moment in time is thought to be down to new Energica Ego bikes electric motorcycles. The electric bikes were at the circuit for their second full test before the MotoE competition. The initial report of the fire suggests that the fire has consumed all 18 of the brand new machines.

Jarez Fire 001

A race against time

The first European MotoGP race of the season was set to at the Spanish circuit in May. Following this, the season would continue for another four circuits. These included the Le Mans, Sachsenring, the Red Bull Ring and Misano circuit. The bosses are now in a race against time to attempt to resurrect the infrastructure to get the season started.

Unfortunately for riders, the electric motorcycles weren’t the only thing lost in the blaze. All equipment based on the same structure was also destroyed. This included all championship materials, tools, laptops and equipment belonging to the riders. Despite this, luckily no persons were reported as injured.

Jarez Fire 002

The race was due to start in six weeks

The season was scheduled to begin in a mere six weeks. According to a statement released by MotoGP bosses, the event has been post-phoned indefinitely. An investigation is underway to establish the exact cause of the fire as at this point, and it is mostly speculation.

However, one thing is for sure. The opener for the season is now cancelled. Officials have stated that changes to the calendar are currently being considered.

Jarez Fire 003

Technology advancements bring risk

The FIM Enel MotoE™ World Cup is a competition that is one of a kind. The event is powered by 100% renewable and sustainable energy. However, as with all technology advancements, there is always risk involved. This scenario merely highlights that reality once more.

Dorna Sports has stated that they are committed to getting the event up and running as soon as possible. However, for the time being, the race will not be held at the Spanish circuit.

For more up today motorcycle news, click here.

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Motorcycle theft has declined

The UK has seen a fall in motorcycle crime over the last 12 months.

Motorcycle crime decreases as car crime are on the rise

Unfortunately for car owners, as motorcycle crime is falling, cars have become the new target. In the last 12 months, automotive crime has risen from 86,000 thefts to 112,000. This is nearly a 50% increase in crime.

In comparison to this, motorcycle crime has fallen from 34,000 to 27,000 over the last 12 months. Many outlets are accrediting the fall in bike-related crime to the police and their new tactics.  Police forces across England have implemented a whole new range of anti-theft measures from tactical vehicle ramming to DNA spray. One thing is for sure, and it’s having some effect.

Motorcycle crime is due to fall even further

Bikers around the UK will be happy to hear that current trends predict that motorcycle thefts will continue to decline in 2019. However, unfortunately, the recovery rate for stolen machines remains low. Additionally, it shows no sign of improvement shortly.

Within the last five years, over 79,228 motorcycles were stolen. This amounted to an excess of £54.5 million pounds. The vast majority of bikes themselves were never recovered. Currently, 59% of bikes which are stolen are either sold on with cloned identities or shipped abroad.

In some cases, the machines are broken down into salvaged parts and make their way onto eBay or Facebook marketplace. As a result, they often their way onto legitimate motorcycles. The owners are often non-the-wiser.

Only 10,400 motorcycles are recovered a year. The vast majority of the bikes are found in a poor state, often set alight. As a result, they are frequently written off by their insurance company.

Police have changed their priorities

About ten years ago, vehicle crime was considered a relatively low priority issue. It was considered an insurance issue rather than a severe offence. However, with the rise of moped gangs and street violence, police forces across the country have been forced to take the issue more seriously. Gang crime has increased ten-fold in the UK. Muggings and robberies are being committed daily and in broad daylight.

As a result, the police have become tougher on bike crime. Without a doubt, motorcycle crime has fallen dramatically. The knock on effect of this is that the Government can no longer afford to see bike crime as an isolated issue.

 

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Motorcycle racing returns to Oliver’s Mount Circuit

A recently formed motorcycle racing club is helping to bring motorcycle racing back to Scarbrough this year.

Scarborough Borough Council have given their full support

The Two Four Three Road Racing Association are bringing back Oliver’s Mount Circuit to Scarborough, with the full backing of Scarborough Borough Council. Currently, two meetings are confirmed in regards to the challenging 2.43-mile public road race track.

These are the Barry Sheen Classic on 27 and 28 July and the Gold Cup from 27 to 29 September. Both of which, have been agreed by the Auto Cycle Union (ACU).

Oliver’s Mount is the only English road racing circuit

Currently, Oliver’s Mount is the only motorcycle road race in England. As you can imagine, it’s exhilarating to see the iconic event return. Both the tourism businesses on the Yorkshire Coast and motorcycle ace fans around the world have welcomed its return.

Scarborough Borough Council has agreed to a lease to GrantRoberts Ltd. The race is operated by the Two Four Three Road Racing Association.

Two Four Three have a wealth of experience when it comes to road racing

When it comes to road racing, Two Four Three have a wealth of knowledge. This includes

  • former Grand Prix and Isle Of Man TT racer
  • supplier of Pirelli tyres to the British Superbike grid
  • Eddie Roberts,
  • and seven times Isle of Man TT winner and multiple winners at Oliver’s Mount, Mick Grant.

Eddie Roberts gives his opinion on the return of Oliver’s Mount

“Behind the scenes, there have been months and months of planning to get us to this stage, and there are a huge number of people I need to thank, including Shaun Dalton and the 1946 Marshal Association. We are working side-by-side with the ACU and work is already underway to improve the safety of the track for both for riders and spectators. We know it’s a huge task to undertake, but we are 100% confident racing will take place at Oliver’s Mount this year.”

“I watched my first road race at Oliver’s Mount in short pants back in the early ‘50s, and it ignited my passion for racing; we couldn’t let this historic track crumble into the history books. We need road racing in England; it’s one of the finest tracks in the world, and it’s unique. I can’t wait to hear and witness classic and modern bikes race around this demanding track once again. Today is an emotional and significant day.”

Oliver’s Mount is the heart of motorcycle racing

For more than 70 years, Oliver’s Mount has been at the heart of motorcycle racing. The circuit was first hosted in 1946. The course itself is narrow and twisty. It boasts hairpin corners and very short straights. As a result, it has become one of the most challenging road races to date. As a result, the race attracts hundreds due to its exciting atmosphere.

Oliver’s Mount has challenged the nerves of many famous riders such as John Surtees, Giacomo Agostini, Barry Sheene and Carl Fogarty, to name a few.

The race has full support from the locals

Scarborough Borough Council and its tourism partners are entirely behind the new club and are excited to bring racing back to the Yorkshire Coast.

Cllr Derek J Bastiman, Leader of Scarborough Borough Council, said:

“This is fascinating news! I am delighted that Eddie and Mick are committed to delivering a bright and exciting future for motorcycle racing at Oliver’s Mount; their experience, knowledge and business acumen within the sport is first class.” 

Oliver’s mount is an essential part of Yorkshire

The race forms a necessary part of the Yorkshire calendar. It contributes around £1.4million annually to the local economy.

Cllr Martin Smith, Scarborough Borough Council Cabinet Member for Leisure, said:

“Racing at Oliver’s Mount has always played a valuable role in supporting the Yorkshire Coast visitor economy. Today’s fantastic news means that the role is set to continue and prosper. Many tourism businesses have been asking me for months when racing will return to Oliver’s Mount so I’m very pleased that I can finally say 2019 for certain!”

Further updates and news about this year’s events at Oliver’s Mount will follow in the coming weeks.

To view more of our articles about Oliver’s Mount, click here.

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Bike theft takes a hit after auctions ban cash in hand

Synetiq is one of the UK’s largest salvage auctioneers. Using its market power, the company has taken a revolutionary method of tackling bike theft across the UK. Starting from the 31st of March, customers will no longer be able to receive cash payments for written off vehicles.

Removing easy sales to help prevent bike theft

The move comes about after Synetiq has taken steps to consult with insurance companies and the West Midlands Police. Synetiq hopes that the new rigorous payment methods would deter and prevent motorcycle thefts by discouraging easy sales.

West Midlands Police launched a campaign last year calling for stricter standards for motorcycle resales. They had many concerns that thieves abilities to resell bikes easily were encouraging the recent rise in bike theft.

Criminal gangs are putting biker’s lives at risk

Police investigations have recently shown that criminal gangs are buying written-off motorcycles from auctions. From here, they go on to repair the bikes with other stolen parts. On occasions, gangs will often use complicated fraudulent methods to obtain insurance payouts. This involves buying several damaged motorcycles, selling them on and then reporting them as stolen. One thing is for sure; gangs are profiting at large from bike theft.

Synetiq are working hard with police to tackle the issue

Chris Todd, Chief Superintendent of WMP, has stated that Synetiq has set a great example to other vehicle auctions. They are actively taking steps to prevent criminals from reselling dangerous vehicles to innocent bikers. The new decision could potentially close many theft loopholes. As a result, it will help keep dangerous bikes off the road minimising risk and injury. In addition to this, the new decision will help address money-laundering loopholes by forcing buyers to reveal a banking footprint.

Previous schemes have helped prevent the sale of stolen parts

Previously in 2012, The Master Scheme have helped prevent theft. This is done by registering the vast majority of motorcycle parts with tags. They offer a free ‘confirm or deny’ check that can be carried out by anyone interested in buying second-hand parts

Here at SorryMate, we know more than any other solicitors that motorbike Crashes and accidents can happen. It’s even happened to our Fergus. If you’re involved in a crash on the road, don’t hesitate to contact us today.

 

 

 

 

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Police are now fighting off-road motorcycling with drones

A neighbourhood team based in Worksop have decided to take it upon themselves to tackle nuisance off-road bikers. Working alongside a local drone training company the team decided to revolutionise the way they address crime.

The drones were donated by SalusUAV

SalusUAV donated the drones to the team. During the test operation, local officers learnt how to manoeuvre the aircraft in the sky. The team hopes that implementing new technology such as drones will help officers be more efficient in identifying criminals quicker.

The drones use onboard cameras to identify issues swiftly

During training, officers were able to fly drones into the air and track individuals using built-in cameras relaying information back to a screen. This meant that the officers could cover more distance than their patrolling officers.

When no issues were identified, the team can quickly move the drone on. What would usually take officers an hour, only took 10 minutes

Drones allowed police to tackle woodland fire early on

During practice, officers managed to locate an area of woodland which had been set alight. As a result, they were quickly able to deploy officers to extinguish it swiftly. The use of drones isn’t the first time the police have used new inventive measures to help tackle crime. Last week it was announced Wrexham police have decided to try out a new DNA spray.

The trial was a success

The team of officers concluded that the trial event was a success. It has allowed local police to understand how technology can help make the force more effective. The team was made up of six local officers, a professional drone pilot and four members of a motorcycle team who acted as the dummy targets.

Neighbourhood Police Sergeant Kate Long said:

“The operation was a great success and has opened our eyes to how effectively we could work to combat rural crime by utilising this technology. It was great to work with SalusUAV and we’d like to thank the local company for offering up their services. Nuisance bikers need to be aware that we’re going to crack down on the issue any way we can and we’ll be looking to use drones in this way in the near future.”

 

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New EU ISA vehicle regulations on DON’T apply to motorbikes

Speeding causes up to 30% of fatalities during road traffic accidents. As a result, the latest proposed changes to EU vehicle law will see ‘intelligent speed assistance’, also known as ISA, devices fitted to all new vehicles.

What is intelligent speed assistance?

ISA is a system which uses built-in road-sign recognition cameras and a GPS-linked speed limit database to alert drivers of their speed. The idea behind the system is to prevent drivers from exceeding the current speed system actively.  The technology looks extremely promising in terms of reducing speeding related-deaths. The vast majority of regulations of this nature aim to protect ‘vulnerable‘ road users, such as cyclists and bikers.

When will ISA be implemented?

Due to poor infrastructure, the new scheme will not be implemented any time soon. Currently, road-sign recognition cameras are not reliable. They often give incorrect readings. In addition to this, GPS speed databases are outdated. They are in dire need of reform. As a result, it isn’t likely that we will see any widespread application anytime soon.

Will the new regulations apply to motorcycles?

The short answer: No. Luckily, I if and when the new regulations come into force, they will only apply to vehicles of categories M, N and O. Motorbikes are category L.

If you’d like to read more motorcycle news, then check out our blogs for further updates. Alternatively, if you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident recently and would like to make a claim, contact SorryMate here.

 

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Wrexham police use DNA spray to help fight motorcycle crime

Illegal off-road bikers are causing issues for the citizens of Wrexham. It’s not the first time such news has hit the headlines. Just over two months ago, it was reported that police had finally developed new ramming tactics to take out bike criminals.

A trial of DNA tagging has commenced in Wrexham

This week Wrexham police have decided to try and fight bike crime with a softer approach. Using a DNA ‘tagging spray’ which can not be removed, it allows the police to identify criminals quickly.

Officers will be able to use invisible dye to mark bikes, clothes and skin. The genetic material in each canister has a unique code contained within it. This code will help identify arrested individuals as well as any motorcycles recovered.

The scheme will be expanded to the whole of North Wales

At the moment, the system is being trialled within Wrexham. However, if the DNA spray is proven to see success, it’s possible that it will be rolled out across North Wales. It is hoped that the new scheme will dramatically reduce motorcycle crime. It has proven to be hugely successful when implemented by the Metropolitan Police in their fight against moped crime. However, officers will need to receive proper training to use the spray.

The DNA spray came about as a result of continuous complaints made by illegal bikes in the Caia Park area of the town.

The spray is permanent and can not be removed

The North West Police have stated that the spray is a water-based product. This means it will not cause any harm or irritation to individuals sprayed with it.

However, the product is permanent and cannot be scrubbed off. It is visible by UV light.

“Even a drop of DNA spray will mark riders and their bikes for a long time,” said Sgt Simon Williams, of the Neighbourhood Policing Team. “This tactic will undoubtedly lead to seizures and prosecutions.”

To read more general motorcycle news, click here.

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Sorry Mate will be at Manchester Bike Show 2018

With only 5 days left until the doors open for the 2019 Manchester Bike Show. We’re extremely excited to be attending again this year.

If you currently have a case with us or have ever had a case with us and want to chat with who dealt with your claim, pop along to the stand and have a chat with us.

The Manchester Bike Show runs from 9 am to 5 pm across the weekend. Our staff will be on hand to answer all your legal questions.

Some of the team will be on the stand as follows:

  • Matt and John will be there both days
  • Steph will be there Saturday morning
  • Fergus, the voice of Sorry Mate himself, will be there Sunday morning
  • and Liz will be there Sunday afternoon

So come and have a chat, buy a raffle ticket or sit on our race bike on the starting grid and have a photo.

In addition to this, we will also be attending the Manchester Motorcycle Show in 2019, the following year. Click here f you would like to find more information on the 2019 show.  You can also find more information about the show from the official Manchester bike show website.

We look forward to seeing you at the Manchester Bike Show.

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Free uninsured loss with SMIDSY and BeMoto

SorryMate andBeMoto Insurance to provide unrivalled service. With no broker fees if you wish to make changes to your policy mid-term, such as changing your bike or moving home.

It’s important to have insurance your vehicle. Bike accidents aren’t cheap. Insurance is really important to protect yourself against any loss if you are involved in an accident. Bikers understand more than anyone how stressful heavy bills are after an accident.

Get Free uninsured loss with BeMoto

SorryMate is offering FREE uninsured loss recovery when you buy BeMoto road insurance and quote “SMIDSY”. You can also receive up to 90 days EU cover per trip as standard and titanium cover for just £40 extra – which includes UK & EU RAC breakdown, £1.5k Helmet & Leathers and £20k Personal Accident cover.

In addition, you can benefit from discounts on other non-road insurance, including SORN and track day bike damage, plus a wide range of available products for you and your bike, as well as declared modification coverage for modifications.

 

To collect a quote from our experienced team, give us a call on 0808 1 642 160 or email bemoto@sorrymate.com.

BeMoto

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Surge of Potholes Affecting UK Roads

Roads across the country have once again been significantly impacted by the winter weather. The UK has seen a surge of potholes appearing more and more frequently.

The UK is said to be experiencing a pothole epidemic

Potholes are caused by a structural failure in the road surface. They are usually caused by water in the underlying soil structure, but they can also be caused by continuous traffic passing over the affected area.

Potholes are a major issue for bikers on the roads, especially for bikers and cyclists. Bikers will often risk being flung from their motorcycles by going over them, or risk being hit by swerving around them.

Figures show one in three vehicles are damaged by potholes

The AA recently released figures showing that one in three drivers has had their vehicle damaged by potholes. However, only one in five people reported the potholes.

Potholes can lead to damage to tyres and bodywork, but for motorcyclists, they can be potentially fatal. Bikers rarely consider putting in a claim against the council in respects to unkept road surfaces. As a result of this, many simply don’t try to reclaim the cost of the damage caused to their bike.

SorryMate can help you make a claim

Making a claim against local councils can be a daunting process. However, we can do all the work for you. SorryMate’s dedicated biking solicitors boast years of experience in dealing with motorbike accidents caused by potholes or other types of damage to the road.

If you have been involved in an accident caused by a pothole in the road and wish to make a claim then give us a call or submit a form by clicking here.