Director of the Island Traffic Authority (ITA), Kenute Hare, is again appealing to motorcyclists to wear protective gear when operating motorcycles on the roads.
“I want motorcyclists to critically understand that the motorcycle is one of the most dangerous motor vehicles anyone could ever operate.
“It has two wheels, it doesn’t have a cage to protect you in the event of a collision, and that is why you must wear protective clothing,” Mr. Hare said.
He was speaking at a recent online Road Safety lunchtime session, initiated by the Road Safety Unit in the Ministry of Transport and Mining.
The ITA Director said that persons need to wear suitable safety helmets that cover the entire head and not the half helmet, which, he pointed out, is inadequate. He said that the chin straps of the helmet must be properly secured.
“Don’t cotch the helmet on the head, because that can be perilous. You want to at least give yourself a fighting chance to survive a collision,” Mr. Hare said.
The ITA Director advised that wearing protective padding is also very critical and noted that shoes and clothing that expose the body, such as slippers and shorts, are not conducive to travelling safely on a motorcycle.
Mr. Hare also warned motorcyclists against modifying motorcycles, as such adjustments could be to their detriment.
He noted, for example, that the removal of the silencer from mufflers can affect the hearing of riders over the long-term.
The silencer is a device used to reduce the noise from the engine, but persons often remove it to allow for loud revving of the motorcycle.
Mr. Hare further urged motorcyclists not to remove the side mirrors, as the devices give the rider a clear view of what is happening behind them, thereby enabling them to take the necessary evasive actions.
“Most of the motorcyclists killed are males. Most of them are breadwinners and we are dying, leaving our children before our time, and the data would reveal that a lot of it has to do with human factors. Predominantly it is the behaviour of the motorcyclist that needs to be addressed,” he said.