Road Safety for moped and motorcycle riders
Brighton Biker nights
There will be no Bikers Night this year due to resource limitations but we’ll be talking to private operators about the possibility of bringing Brighton Biker Nights (BBN) back in 2018. Our BBN partners Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) and Serv Sussex are working with us on the publicity for an 18 month trial to allow motorcycles, mopeds and scooters to use the Lewes Road Bus Lane. The trial will be on Lewes Road between the Vogue gyratory and Stony Mere Way starting on 6 May 2017.
Trial use of Lewes Road bus lanes by motorcycles
From May 6 2017, Motorcycles, scooters and mopeds can use the Lewes Road bus lanes between the Vogue gyratory and the Stony Mere Way junction. This is for an initial 18 month trial period.
What physical changes are taking place on the Lewes Road?
Coloured surfacing at five key junctions was added at the end of 2016. The surfacing is designed to remind vehicles turning in and out of these junctions that they are crossing a moving lane of traffic, even if the general traffic lane is stationary. Bus lane signage is being changed to include a motorcycle symbol authorising access for motorcycles - see attachments below. Lining and surfacing repairs are being carried out in late spring/ early summer 2017 and ongoing maintenance will continue throughout the trial.
The aim is to improve journey times and reduce congestion on this key corridor.
No vehicles defined as ‘tricycles’ (see DVLA V5C form) or any motorcycles with side cars are allowed.
See our top ten tips for riding in the bus lanes in the motorcycle in bus lanes leaflet attached below.
12 months of monitoring will need to show no significant road casualty or speeding impact and an improvement in congestion. A decision will then be made on making this change permanent.
You can comment during the first six months of the trial via the Council’s Traffic Regulation order pages: http://www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/content/parking-and-travel/parking/traffic-regulation-order-tro-proposals.
Other bus lanes open to motorcycles
Motorcyclists can use two sections of bus lane on the A23 and A259 on a permanent basis. These are between Carden Avenue and Preston Drove on the A23 and from Telscombe Cliffs Way to the Ovingdean Roundabout on the A259. Tricycles and Motorbikes with side cars are not permitted.
Bus lanes not open to motorcycles
City centre bus lanes including Edward Street remain closed to motorcycles because:
- Edward Street has part time bus lanes, which recent UK research strongly suggests are less safe for Power Two Wheelers (PTW) users.
- Sight lines are difficult from some side junctions.
- The majority of other bus lanes fall below the Department for Transport recommended minimum width of 3 metres. Sussex Police have expressed concern about the safety of pedestrians and cyclists if motorcycles were to use these bus lanes.
General road safety advice
Moped and motorbike riders are one of the road user groups at highest risk on the roads of Sussex. Part of the reason is due to the difficulty of being seen by other road users and not being able to judge the biker’s speed easily.
Wearing the right gear is essential, this includes protective:
- boots - ankle protection important
- helmet - Sharp recommendation to change every 5 years unless involved in impact - in which case change immediately.
Coming off at just 20mph and hitting the road surface unprotected can do some serious damage. Recent research backs up common sense - wearing boots means you are over 50% less likely to have foot/ankle injuries if you come off compared to shoes/trainers.
Being visible in both what you wear and how you position yourself on the road will also let people see you. For more information go to the DirectGov riding motorcycles and mopeds page, or take a look at the share the road campaign and SSRP - safer for motorcyclists.
A variety of organisations with local groups offer advanced training, these include:
- Bike Safe
- The Institute of Advanced Motorists - motorcyclists
- The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents
- Sussex Safer Roads Partnership
The Enhanced Rider Scheme also offers advanced training to those who have passed their test.
CRASH card/ICE sticker
The South East Coast Ambulance Service Trust has joined forces with the Highways Agency and launched a new potentially life-saving card for motorcyclists called the CRASH card. It will hold vital information about the rider to help ambulance staff treat riders involved in serious road traffic collisions.
To receive a CRASH card, contact the Highways Agency on 0300 123 5000. An updated version of this - the ICE sticker from CERQL - is currently sponsored in Sussex by the Sussex Safer Roads Partnership. It enables you to upload onto a website a photo of you, medical and contact details which can be accessed on site via a QR code sticker on your helmet via a smartphone. If you have difficulty getting either of these products contact email@example.com
There are many similar robust commercial products which identify you and any medical conditions, which are worth carrying, just in case.