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Moving from 'Think Bike' to 'Biker THINK!'

On my www.facebook.com/survivalskills page two weeks ago, I posted an article about the lack of imagination in Police Scotland's response to motorcycle crashes - basically, it was more enforcement. At the same time, what caught my eye was the goal that the Scottish 'Road Safety Framework' is aiming for is a 30% reduction in motorcyclist 'killed and seriously injured' (KSI) numbers by 2030.


Suggesting that some new ideas were needed, I promptly got a response from an accident claims firm in Scotland telling me about their campaign aimed at drivers called 'Take Another Look':


"We are calling for a new campaign to ‘#takeanotherlook’ at junctions..."


On the face of it, that seems like a good idea. Nationwide data from the Department for Transport shows that in 2021, intersections - whether they are T, Y or staggered junctions - are the most common locations of motorcyclist casualties. Collisions at junctions represent no less than 34.7% of combined fatalities and injuries - one-in-three.


The 'Take Another Look' people offer an answer as they say their 'new' campaign is:


"...echoing the ‘Think Bike’ initiative of the 1970s that was aimed at increasing motorists’ awareness of motorcycles and reducing accidents caused by failure to spot them in time."


Just one problem. Whilst calling for a 30% drop in motorcycle casualties by 2030, that same Scottish Road Safety Framework document made this telling statement:


"With regards to longer-term trend of motorcycle fatalities since 1994, there have been many peaks and troughs, and we are still in the same position we were in thirty years ago."


On the one hand, we have a freshly-minted safety campaign simply repeating what we have been trying for the last fifty.


On the other, we have a statement of fact telling us that thirty years of Scottish motorcycle safety campaigns haven't changed anything in thirty years.


Shouldn't that be telling us something? Why are we expecting something that hasn't worked for half a century to suddenly start working now?


Even if the people putting these campaigns together can't see it, can't we motorcyclists see that it's time to move on from expecting drivers to keep us safe by 'Thinking Bike'? Isn't it time to adopt a fresh approach where we learn more about just why drivers don't see motorcycles, to adopt a proactive approach where we stop relying on others, and crucially to learn to look for ways to avoid being caught up in what needn't actually be a collision?


Biker, THINK!


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WHAT IS SCIENCE OF BEING SEEN? (SOBS)

Science Of Being Seen (or SOBS for short) is my in-depth investigation into the 'Sorry Mate, I Didn't See You' SMIDSY collision between motorcycles and other vehicles.


Created for the fire services 'Biker Down' course in 2012, it's fully researched and based on SCIENCE, and NOT speculation.


I aim to quash some persistent myths about how and why junction collisions happen, and show how motorcyclists can employ simple techniques to stay out of trouble!


BUY THE SOBS e-book:


WATCH OUT FOR LIVE ONLINE TALKS

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