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Bikers urged to improve skills

Three motorbikes lined up together18/04/13

By Steven Birch

Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond has helped to launch a new campaign to encourage motorcyclists to improve their defensive riding skills.

The THINK! 'Stay In Control' initiative has been created in partnership with motorcycle industry experts.

With bikers being more exposed than car drivers, the way they conduct themselves on the roads can have an even bigger impact on their safety.

It is hoped that with an influx of posters, leaflets and other promotional material being distributed by the campaign than they will either think twice or take out training to improve.

As part of the initiative the information will be displayed at motorcycle dealerships and retailers across Britain.

The scheme has been timed to coincide with the warmer weather this spring, which heralds the start of the peak riding season that runs throughout the summer months.

Mr Hammond explained that the scheme has been designed in response to the fact that, although bikers only account for one percent of road users, they featured in 19 percent of deaths last year.

He described how cutting down biker deaths on the roads is a "key priority for the Government", while pointing out that THINK BIKER initiative will be run alongside it to encourage car drivers to modify their behaviour too.

"This latest campaign urges bikers to ride defensively - this includes taking a 'lifesaver glance' around before manoeuvring and giving yourself time to react to potential hazards," he added.

"Any message that has the potential to reduce the number of tragedies on our roads involving motorcyclists and save lives is worth hammering home."

The industry partners that have already thrown their weight behind the campaign include Motor Cycle Monthly magazine, the Motorcycle Industry Association, Yamaha and Devitt Insurance.

Their expertise, coupled with that of any other groups or experts looking to get involved, is being seen as crucial to the success of the initiative.

The THINK! campaigns team has urged other organisations that are able to promote the campaign to get in touch.

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