A Safer Start on the Roads for Motorcyclists

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The Hon Terry Mulder MP

Minister for Roads

Minister for Public Transport

Victorian motorcycle riders will have a safer start on the roads, with the phasing in of the new Graduated Licensing System (GLS) to be introduced from October, Minister for Roads Terry Mulder announced today.

Mr Mulder said this important new program includes improved training, education and testing, as well as conditions to ensure newly licensed motorcyclists are better prepared and less likely to be injured in crashes.

“The motorcycle GLS is being introduced in two stages over the next 18 months to help make new riders, safer. It follows extensive consultation with rider groups and road safety experts,” Mr Mulder said.

“We’ve had great results with the GLS reducing road trauma among new car drivers and we want to extend these safety outcomes to motorcyclists as well.

“The system will gradually remove restrictions to manage their risk as they gain the experience for them to become safer road users.”

The new motorcycle GLS will include:

Restricted Licence Phase
Learner Phase ride with headlight on at all times no mobile phone use no towing can only ride an automatic motorcycle if tested in an automatic motorcycle compulsory carriage of licence retaining current requirements:

– must only ride a learner approved motorcycle
– zero BAC
– no pillion passenger

The duration for the conditions will be increased from the current 1 year to 3 years ride with headlight on at all times wear a high visibility vest or jacket whilst riding can only ride an automatic motorcycle if tested in an automatic motorcycle retaining current requirements:

  • must only ride a learner approved motorcycle
  • zero BAC
  • no pillion passenger
  • no mobile phone use
  • no towing
  • must display L plates
  • compulsory carriage of permit

The Victorian Coalition Government is investing approximately $2.92 million from the Motorcycle Safety Levy to fund the development and implementation of the GLS.

Mr Mulder said the first part of the motorcycle GLS involves introducing new requirements for learners and newly licensed riders.

It will also extend the current requirements, including zero blood alcohol, no pillion passengers and a ban on mobile phone use, from 12 months to three years, bringing them into line with new car drivers.

These learner motorcycle licence holders will also be required to have headlights on at all times to improve their visibility on the roads and wear a high-visibility vest or jacket while riding.

Any rider who passes their test on an automatic motorcycle or scooter will not be allowed to ride a manual motorcycle until they have completed their restricted licence period or have been retested on a manual motorcycle.

The second stage of the motorcycle GLS, involving the enhanced training requirements, a new on-road test and on-road assessments during the learner phase, will come into effect from late 2015.

“New riders will have to complete the mandatory training session and an on road assessment before they start riding solo,” Mr Mulder said.

“For people who have never ridden a motorbike before, adequate training is vital and the on-road test will ensure they have the skills to reduce their chances of being involved in a crash.

“Motorcycle groups have told us they support improvements to training and this was also a key recommendation of the Parliamentary Road Safety Committee in its Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety.”

Mr Mulder said an assessment of the GLS for car drivers showed there were enormous benefits in gradually introducing people to the road through a system of improved education, experience acquisition and conditions to reduce risks arising from issues such as distraction.

“We want similar results for our motorcyclists because learner and first year licensed riders make up almost one third of all motorcycle fatalities and serious injuries.”

Introducing the motorcycle GLS was one of the key initiatives in Victoria’s Road Safety Strategy 2013-22 and Action Plan (2013-16).

For more information about the motorcycle GLS and its changes visit the VicRoads website or for information about the Road Safety Strategy and other road safety initiatives go to roadsafety.vic.gov.au

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