'Fine' conditions warning for Sidmouth motorcyclists

SIDMOUTH motorcycle riders have been warned accidents are most likely to happen in fine conditions by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).

SIDMOUTH motorcycle riders have been warned accidents are most likely to happen in fine conditions by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).

Most crashes occur in daylight in fine weather, according to an IAM study published this week.

Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research, said today: "The fact that most crashes happen in good conditions may come as a surprise, but is due to the fact that many riders simply avoid riding in bad weather or in the dark. The message is clear - even if the conditions seem good for riding, accidents can still happen."

"Sundays are the most dangerous day of the week, with 20 per cent more accidents happening than on any other day of the week. Sundays have mostly leisure riders on the roads, who travel much longer distances than the average weekday rider."

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The research also shows that half of rider fatalities happen when the rider leaves the road and hits a roadside object, such as a crash barrier, road sign or tree.

According to the report most fatal crashes occur on bigger bikes with over 60 per cent of bikes involved being over 500cc. Mr Greig added: "Over the years bikes have got bigger and bigger, so this may be down to there being more of them on the road."

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Younger riders have more crashes than those in their mid 30s and 40s, unsurprising as they have less experience on the roads. Riders under 30 represent 20 per cent of all motorcyclists but they represent half of all fatal and serious casualties. Younger riders tend to crash in urban areas and at junctions with other vehicles but this is often the fault of the other road user.

Rural bends are responsible for a third of rural crashes, again often involving older riders on bigger bikes. Rural crashes are more likely to occur on left-hand bends, and are often the fault of the rider themselves.

Mr Greig added: "Safe riders are made, not born. Courses such as those led by the IAM expose them to experienced riders who can show them where the risks lie."

Launching the report at the Motorcycle and Scooter show in the NEC, journalist and broadcaster Vicki Butler-Henderson added: "This IAM study shows the importance of competent, confident riding. I applaud the IAM for publishing this report as it can only change rider behaviour for the better as well as making riding more enjoyable and safe.

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