Motorcycle Awareness Month 07 September 2018 For many motorcyclists, the start of spring marks the real riding season and Motorcycle Awareness Month. Our Council supports the Ride Forever safety initiative as many motorbike riders enjoy our Coromandel Loop. Whether you ride or drive, everyone plays a part in motorcycle safety. “This is a timely reminder to all road users to pay attention and make safe decisions so everybody can get where they’re going safely,” says Ingrid Le Fevre our Road Safety Co-ordinator. With its beautiful scenery and curving rhythm, the Coromandel Peninsula is a favourite for motorcyclists because it is a loop. The ride is challenging, which means the things that make it enjoyable also make it risky. That’s why you need to keep your head in the game. The Coromandel Loop is made up of two loops: Northern Loop (187.8km) Southern Loop (129.7km) It is recommended to stop regularly on your ride, so be sure to check out NZTA's handy map of the Coromandel here with distances between main towns and rest stops so you can start planning. “Motorbikes can be harder to see when driving, so drivers please look twice at intersections and before you change lanes. And to riders, don’t take risks. An unsafe manoeuvre or going too fast for the conditions could have tragic consequences. Also bear in mind that you may be in a blind spot when overtaking,” says Inspector Peter McKennie, NZ Police Manager for Operations, Road Policing. “Be in a position to react safely if someone makes a mistake in front of you. Urge on the side of caution, even when you think you have the right of way. When on the roads, being safe is considerably more important than being right,” says Inspector McKennie. NZ Transport Agency Director Safety and Environment Harry Wilson says the risk of a crash on rural roads increases for motorcyclists during spring as they are starting to get out and ride again as the weather improves. “I’d like to remind riders to check their bikes over after the months they may have spent unused in a garage. Check that the registration and warrant of fitness are current, tyre pressures are correct, and that brakes and suspension are functioning,” says Mr Wilson. “Also take advantage of the Ride Forever courses that are available.” The Ride Forever safety training courses are run throughout New Zealand and are of benefit to all riders at any stage of their riding experience. The NZ Transport Agency, ACC, and the Motorcycle Safety Advisory Council partnered with training experts to develop the courses. Regardless of your skill or experience, the Ride Forever courses are worth doing, as the skills and handling they teach you could quite simply save your life. For more information visit: www.rideforever.co.nz Why do we need an awareness month? For safety. This time of the year motorcycle crashes, injuries and fatalities increase as more riders are out on the roads. Motorcycles are becoming more popular, with a 60% increase in motorcycle travel on the road in the last 10 years. They’re also involved in more crashes. In 2015, motorcycles were involved in 17% of crashes and 10% of deaths despite making up only 3% of road users. So far this calendar year, 22 riders have died on the roads. See the most popular motorcycle routes, and crash locations here. "There is a pressing need to improve the statistics, and this is why our Council support Motorcycle Awareness Month," says Ms Le Fevre. For more information you can visit the website here. Helmet yourself and win Be in to win $500 of riding gear for Motorcycle Awareness Month from the retailer of your choice.Simply sign up and complete a RideForever course in September or show your support by inserting the yellow helmet into your Facebook profile picture and share it with your Facebook friends. Click here for more information.