Cops call to curb motorcyclists deaths

Queensland Police are urging motorbike riders to brush up on their safety knowledge. Picture: QPS

February 2021 was the deadliest month of the year for motorcyclists. Thirteen were killed in 28 days, making up 20 per cent of total motorcycle fatalities for the year.

The Queensland Police Service (QPS) wants to change the narrative this year, calling on riders and other road users to work with them to protect this vulnerable group.

Assistant Commissioner Ben Marcus said six motorcyclists had already been killed on the roads this year – which is one more than the same time last year.

“One fatal crash is one too many and we also have to consider other riders who have lifelong injuries – as a rider myself, this hits particularly close to home,” Assistant Commissioner Marcus said.

“An analysis of crashes in the first three months of last year has showed us that riders were at fault almost three quarters of the time (73 per cent). Of those crashes, 93 per cent involved excess speed for the conditions, 68 per cent were inexperienced riders and 62 per cent were found to have engaged in dangerous operation or intoxication (or suspected intoxication).

“An alarming 56 per cent were not wearing a helmet or had their helmet fitted incorrectly – this is incredibly concerning.

“As riders, our safety is largely up to us. On a motorcycle, you are 30 times more likely to die in a crash than if you were in a car – when everything on the road is bigger than you, you just have to be more careful.

“We’re asking all riders and motorists when they take to the roads this month, or any time this year, to take their responsibility very seriously. Together, we can change this in 2022.”

Senior Sergeant Darren Smith said as riders and motorists – everyone had a responsibility to ensure the safety of motorcyclists.

“A moment of distraction might mean a dent in your car, but it can be as serious as the death of another fellow road user. Drivers should stay focused and look out for motorcyclists,” Senior Sergeant Smith said.

“There are also some simple things riders can do to reduce the risk of being involved in a crash including riding to the conditions and avoiding dangerous riding conditions.

“Adequate safety gear is a must including a good quality and well fitted helmet to protect you.

“It’s also important to be familiar with your bike and ride according to your skill level – if you’re a returning rider, we encourage you to brush up on your skills just like we do as motorcycle officers once a year.

“Finally, ensure your bike is well maintained and road worthy to keep it running smoothly.

“We ultimately all have a responsibility to help make our roads a safer place in 2022, so that no matter our destination or mode of transport, we all get there safely.”