Tue | Sep 28, 2021

Sobering tips for motorcycle riders

Published:Sunday | July 25, 2021 | 12:06 AMPaul Glenroy Messam - Contributor
Motorcycle couriers (from left) Romario McCalla, Rocket Delivery Services; Nicholas Linton, supervisor Damian Smith, and Shamar Fray, all of Errand Express, on duty, via online portal ENDS, at a KFC-Pizza Hut site in Montego Bay during lockdown.
Motorcycle couriers (from left) Romario McCalla, Rocket Delivery Services; Nicholas Linton, supervisor Damian Smith, and Shamar Fray, all of Errand Express, on duty, via online portal ENDS, at a KFC-Pizza Hut site in Montego Bay during lockdown.
Dancer Expensive performs a stunt with a female on a motorcycle.
Dancer Expensive performs a stunt with a female on a motorcycle.
1
2
3
4

Regularly, they weave in and out of heavy traffic. They are easy to manoeuvre the busy streets in the city. They can move individuals without much delay. They are a means of transportation in some areas within our island. However, are they always being responsible on our busy roadways?

We are talking about our motorcycle riders. It was a Wednesday afternoon of June 30, 2021, at approximately 1:50 p.m., that a motor bike rider could be seen transporting two children on his bike - one child seated in front and another behind him on the unit. Both children wore no helmet. That was disaster begging to happen on Waterloo Road.

Cars, buses, trucks, bicycles are not the only road users responsible for avoiding accidents or collisions. Motorcycle riders also have a responsibility to avoid collisions and to obey the road code. “They should know their limits, the handling characteristics of the bikes, and the correct protective equipment required for safe driving,” advises Lurkent Hanson, a senior instructor who worked at the Advanced Driver Training Centre (ADTC). “The best way to learn the skills needed to ride safely in traffic is to go through a course in motor cycle riding through a certified driving school,” he adds.

According to Hanson, motorcycle riders need the necessary defensive skills, understanding of the traffic dangers, and a stress-free mind to hit the road.

As there are basic defensive driving procedures needed to learn for operating a motor car, there are also critical procedures to learn for the safe operation of a motorcycle. The entire concept of starting, stopping, balancing, and controlling of the cycle needs to be mastered from very early. It should be noted that motorcyclists are left open to various elements. They are not protected like car drivers. As a result, it is imperative that they put the necessary things in place to escape or reduce injuries in a fall or any eventualities.

It is advised that motorcyclist swear protective clothing and equipment. These include:

1. Goggles or a face shield for eye protection. The face shield is that clear plastic device that is attached to the helmet.

2. Heavy shoes or boots.

3. Pants and jacket of heavy, bright, reflective materials.

4. Gloves.

5. Helmet

“Wearing a helmet can save the lives of many cyclists,” says Superintendent Walter Philp, a former head of the Police Traffic Department. “Cyclists who do not wear helmets are three times more likely to receive fatal head and neck injuries than riders who wear them,” he adds.

Experts also suggest that helmets that cover the full head and neck are even more effective.

The Road Safety Unity of the Ministry of Transport and Mining states that under the law, “every person shall at all time while driving or riding on a motor cycle wear a protective helmet of a prescribed shape, quality, construction, or standard.” It also states that the standards identifying motorcycle helmets approved under the law are found in Sections 13 and 15, and Part B of the first Schedule of the Road Traffic (Protective Devices) Regulations 1999.