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October 2012

Hi Guys I hope you and your family and friends are all well and with this brilliant spring weather you are getting out into some of our great motorcycle roads and enjoying yourselves.

HI-VIS CLOTHING.  There has been a lot of talk mostly coming out of Victoria on a police comment that hi-vis clothing should or will be compulsory within a couple of years. This as is the case quite often been blown out of all proportion. It was a personal comment from a Victorian police officer at a regional safety conference that was picked up by the local newspaper and from there to the national press. The local newspaper that originally reported his comments have since issued a retraction but now the story seems to have developed a life of its own. The truth is hi-vis clothing can be of assistance in some situations but not in all situations. There is no Australian standard for hi-vis motorcycle clothing and the Australian and overseas research that I have seen puts its effectiveness in doubt. Any changes made in the name of road safety must be based on sound evidence of the effectiveness and not on what someone thinks is a good idea.

AUSTRALIAN MOTORCYCLE COUNCIL, ANNUAL CONFERENCE.  I have recently returned from the Australian Motorcycle Council Annual Conference in Hobart and this year it has certainly been a huge step forward from what has always been a very informative process. This year there was over 30 people in attendance from all states and various rider organizations such as Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries and Motorcycling Australia and included 3 journalists from motorcycle magazines. We heard the annual reports from all state organizations with the highs and lows of their work within each state. We were given a few brief reports on what is happening international by organizations such as Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations and the International Road Federation. The guest speaker was the Tasmanian Police Minister David O’Byrne who announced that the National Road Safety Council will be disbanded in November. At this stage it is not clear what if anything will take its place or if their work will be carried out by the Federal Department of Infrastructure. We had a long discussion on how we can proceed with the National Motorcycle Safety Summit that was to be funded through the National Road Safety Council. It was agreed to pursue this through the Department of Infrastructure and our Contacts on Federal Parliament. I had one item that I added to the agenda and that was to develop a list of the priority issues that we are going to tackle in the next twelve months, so we have something to measure our success by for next through the progress of this list of issues. It was agreed that we develop the priorities and establish working groups to progress these issues. The priorities in no special order are –

1 – Secure the funding for a National Motorcycle Safety Summit

2 – Establish a National Motorcycle and Scooter Strategy

3 – Work more closely with Motorcycling Australia and The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries on special projects that have mutual benefits to all parties.

4 – Work on establishing a sensible National approach to motorcycle helmet regulations with a provision to allow helmets certified in USA, Europe and Japan to be deemed to comply without having to be retested in Australia. (I am part of this working group)

5 – Work to allow the legal practice of lane filtering at a national level with it being adopted by all States. (I am also part of this working group)

There was a lot more discussed at the conference but room in this newsletter limits what I can cover but I have tried to cover the highlights. I believe that this AMC Annual Conference was the most informative and productive that I have been to and look forward to next year to recap on our progress on the issues. I have been asked to look onto organizing for next year’s AMC conference to be held in Perth and I am working towards that and my plan is to organize an open session of the conference to the public.

MOTORCYCLE SAFETY AWARENESS WEEK 2012, NOVENBER 25TH – DECEMBER 1ST

We are holding our annual Motorcycle Safety Awareness Week on the above dates and below are some of the activities that will be organized for that week.

Saturday November 25th Politicians, Police and Public Ride. We have invite all W.A. politicians from both sides of parliament and the Police department to join with us on a short ride from Burswood car park to the Police Academy in Joondalup were we will have a free sausage sizzle some safety displays and a competition were you can win a three course dinner for two and a chance to talk to our politicians and police about rider safety issues.

We will be running a free Ride Right road craft course during the week

We will once again have the spot Jo Rider competition running for the entire week. This involves riders wearing a vest that reads I am Jo Rider and when other road users see Jo they can call the RAC and register to go into the draw for a great prize. The idea is to get car drivers looking for motorcycle and scooter riders. If you can be part of this and would be prepared to wear a Jo Rider vest please contact me.

We will once again have the Main Roads variable message signs with some motorcycle safety messages for the entire week and we are getting some some good coverage in the newspapers and through the RAC Horizons magazine.

We will finish the week with a safety display at the Perth Motorcycle Charity Ride on December 1st at the Arena in Joondalup.

I would like to thank the RAC and W.A. Local Government Association for all there help and support in organizing this event.

As always if you wish to contact to me on any safety issues please feel fee

Dave Wright Ph 0419 954 424   email – davmar08@bigpond.com

RIDE LIKE YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON IT.

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