Health warnings for bikes

By Steve Farrell -

General news

 11 September 2007 11:07

Consideration should be given to cigarette-style health warnings for motorcycles, campaign groups have said.

The warnings would contain messages such as: ‘Motorcyclists make up less than 1% of road traffic but suffer around 18% of deaths and serious injuries.’

Paige Mitchell, coordinator of the Slower Speeds Initiative, said warnings should be combined with new regulations limiting the power, weight and speed of motorcycles.

She said: “If health warnings were used to support regulation and make the basis of regulation more intelligible to the consumer, then clearly that would be a good thing.”

Roger Geffen, campaigns and policy manager for CTC, the national cyclists’ organisation, said: “Anything that helps raise awareness - that prompts people think about the risks not only that they’re taking for themselves but imposing on other people - has got to be worth exploring.”

Roger Geffen said stickers on bikes quoting motorcycle casualty figures and warning us to be careful would make a “more helpful message” than stickers telling us to wear crash helmets, which have in the past been placed on bikes by manufacturers.

He said: “If the feeling is that the motorcycle helmet sticker works to influence behaviour, then working to influence the speed at which motorcyclists ride would strike me as a much more important thing to do.” 

The Slower Speeds Initiative and CTC were among eight campaign groups to sign a letter to MPs urging them to insist Government look at ‘downsizing’ bikes by limiting power, weight and speed.

Get MCN on Wednesday, September 12, 2007 to see which political party has joined the two groups in their stance on health warnings.

To read more about motorcycle safety: click here