The Motorcycle Council's Road Safety Website

Front cover PSF 2010

Welcome to the Motorcycle Council of NSW (MCC) road safety web site. This site is for riders and others with an interest in improving motorcycling safety.

The site is part of the MCC's strategic plan, Positioned for Safety, for a systematic approach to motorcycle safety based on evidence. Positioned for Safety is the result of consultation with riders, the motorcycle industry, road safety researchers, local government and state government agencies. It provides a framework and direction for the MCC and other stakeholders to improve road safety for motorcyclists.

The aim is to enable riders:
1. To become informed participants in the motorcycle safety debate.
2. To take part in setting the agenda and driving issues pro-actively on behalf of motorcyclists rather than simply reacting to government policy decisions.

The strategic planning process:
• Identified the key safety issues for motorcyclists in NSW
• Determined priorities and established objectives for the MCC and other stakeholders
• Identified strategies for addressing those issues
• Developed stakeholder support and participation in improving motorcycle safety
• Established a base for coordinated, long term planning for motorcycle safety.

The first plan was released in 2001. An independent evaluation found that it has resulted in an increased focus on motorcycle safety in NSW at the State and Local government levels as well as in the rider community (Riches, 2005). The MCC is now regularly consulted about motorcycle safety issues and represents riders' interests to government and policy makers. Other significant achievements include the development of this website, the expansion of Motorcycle Awareness Week and research commissioned into motorcycle protective clothing and rider fatigue.

The current plan, called Positioned for Safety 2010, was released in November, 2007. Copies can be downloaded from the Publications link below.

As a volunteer organisation, we are proud of what has been achieved through the first strategic plan and hope that this new plan will further contribute to safer motorcycling in NSW.

Guide to the site

Positioned for Safety set out a program of actions to address motorcycle safety from four perspectives. This website uses that format to provide information to riders and to others who are interested in motorcycle safety.

Safer Roads - WHO deals with poor road design or condition
Safer People - WHAT we know about motorcycle road safety
Safer Equipment - WHICH clothing and equipment will help to keep you safe
Safety Co-ordination - WHEN we work with other road users and government agencies.

The site also includes links and references to research about motorcycle safety issues.

Publications Links to download Positioned for Safety and other related documents.

Motorcycle crashes in NSW Links to the latest information on crash statistics.

News, research & events Links to recent information on motorcycle safety news, research & events.

Motorcycle Riding Gear Links to information for riders about choosing motorcycle protective clothing.

Gearing up - An industry seminar on Motorcycle Protective Clothing was held on 4th May 2005. The aim was to gain broad support for establishing a process to ensure motorcycle clothing sold in Australia will provide the level of protection from injury that is promised. Follow the links for a full report on the outcomes.

Current Projects - Information on motorcycle safety projects involving the MCC.

References to literature - Scientific and Technical Papers.

How to lobby a Local Council

Local Councils are responsible for 80% of NSW roads.

You will be most effective as a lobbyist, if you understand how your Local Council operates. Who to speak to, what sort of information or community pressure works. How Councils operate will give you a general outline of the structure of Local Government. Most councils have a web site, and it will be worth your while using it to learn as much as you can about your Council.

Always speak to the relevant administrative staff first - your request may be something they can deal with as a matter of routine. If the member of staff cannot help, or if you are unhappy with their response, then it is time to lobby other areas of Council.

How to lobby

  • Speak directly to your local Councillor or to the Councillor who sits on the relevant committee as well as to the relevant Council administrative staff.

  • Make a written request for action to the Local or Regional Traffic Committee.

  • Make a formal request for the hazard to be referred for independent expert advice (e.g. Road Safety Auditors, Consultant Forensic Engineers etc).

  • Make a presentation on motorcycle safety issues to the Local or Regional Traffic Committee.

  • Many Councils have a Road Safety Officer who is responsible for road safety education programs. The Road Safety Officer is a good contact who may be able to help you.
  • Contact local motorcycle clubs or ride groups to make a joint representation (this may carry more weight than an individuals request).

  • Arrange for a delegation of local motorcyclists to meet with and express their concerns to the Mayor.

  • Contact the Motorcycle Council (MCC) for advice. Note the MCC are developing a program of motorcycle awareness seminars for Local Council engineers and Road Safety Officers.
  • Contact the local media and brief them on the existence of the motorcycle hazard and what you are trying to do about it.

  • Some routes cross a number of Council boundaries. Establish contact and work with the relevant Local Council and RTA managers who have responsibility for the route.

  • Undertake a survey of specific routes to identify hazards in the design or condition of the road. Write a report in which you link each identified hazard to the relevant page in Austroads, Guide to Engineering Practice Part 15 - Motorcycle Safety.

  • In some cases it may be necessary to a detailed written submission demonstrating the need for the work. A submission should present your case for action. You need to show that the problem is a safety hazard which has caused or could cause crashes. Local police, the Council and RTA will all have statistics on any reported crashes that have occurred at the site. However many motorcycle crashes are not reported, so information on the actual crash incidence at the site could be more useful. Possible sources could include a survey of local motorcyclists and motorcycle repairers.
    Motorcycle Clubs

Motorcycle clubs should make contact with their Local Council to ensure they will be included in all community consultations relevant to their interests as a local road user group. These could include:

  • Council commmunity education campaigns to address road user behaviour by and towards motorcyclists
  • All new road designs and major Development Applications (DAs)
  • The review of planning instruments (eg Local Environment Plans (LEPs) and Development Control Plans (DCPs)) to ensure that they make appropriate provision for motorcyclists (eg parking provisions in major developments).
  • Social and economic planning (eg to promote the tourist value of motorcyclists to an area).

Motorcycle Council of NSW - hazard reports tracking

If you send a Hazard Report email to your council, please also send a copy of your report to the MCC. The MCC will use this information to record and track the number of hazards reported. Such records may prove useful in cases where a reported hazard has not been repaired and a crash has subsequently occurred.

MCC support for major projects

If you believe major change is require for section or road, contact the MCC, who may be able to undertake the project or at least provide support and advice to local motorcyclists.

Larger scale projects include those that require significant costs such as those requiring the redesign of a section of road as well as those that involve routes that cross local government boundaries and/ or involve RTA roads.

For example, as a result of lobbying by the MCC, the RTA undertook a motorcycle specific road safety audit of the Old Pacific Highway between Cowan and Somersby.