State-wide motorcycle blitz aims to reduce fatalities as deaths reach five-year high

The Queensland Police Service (QPS) will today launch a three-day safety blitz as motorcyclist fatalities remain on track to exceed a five-year high.

The blitz, which will continue across the weekend until Sunday 1 August, will see an increased policing presence in high traffic areas for recreational riders with officers focused on engaging with riders about safe road habits.

Assistant Commissioner Ben Marcus said the blitz was intended to protect the most vulnerable road users who were vastly overrepresented in this year’s crash data.

“So far this year 41 motorcyclists including a pillion passenger have died on our roads with lives lost being almost 40 per cent higher than the previous five years average of the same period,” Assistant Commissioner Marcus said.

“Every life lost on our roads has a devastating impact on individuals, families and friends and the community and as a rider myself, motorcycle crashes hit particularly close to home.

“When you’re on a bike, everything is bigger than you and you need to correctly interpret the riding environment to ensure you are prepared and in control.”

Assistant Commissioner Marcus said with a spike in motorcycle registrations over the past year, there were more riders out on the roads.

“I know firsthand how enjoyable it is to be out there on the open road, but we want you to do it safely,” he said.

“Our analysis of these crashes is telling us that it’s male recreational riders that are most highly represented (94%). The weekends are when we are seeing the most crashes happen (42%) with around 55 per cent of crashes happening at around 60 – 80km/h.

“That’s why we will be out there this weekend. We want to remind you that whether you’ve been riding motorcycles for 15 years or a few months, it is paramount that all riders practice the basics and know that their actions can have direct consequences.

“We’re also asking all motorists to slow down and look out for riders. Rider safety is everyone’s responsibility, but that starts with you.”

Andrew Mahon, General Manager of the Land Transport Safety and Regulation Division, Transport and Main Roads, also expressed his concern for the increase in the number of riders who have lost their lives.

“As a rider myself, I know how much more vulnerable we are on the road without the protection of a car. However, the majority of riders killed on Queensland roads were in crashes where no other vehicle was involved,” Mr Mahon said.

“This is why I ask all riders to lessen your additional element of risk by making safe decisions on the road.

“This doesn’t just mean following the road rules and wearing protective gear-if you’re not feeling fully focussed or if the weather or conditions aren’t ideal, stay off the bike and save it for another time so you can continue to enjoy riding. Always stay focussed and don’t let complacency put you at risk”

A total of 157 lives have been lost on Queensland roads so far in 2021, 15 more than the same time last year.

Motorcycle fatal crash statistical analysis (current as at 11 July, 2021)

  • 36 male riders, 1 female rider and 1 female pillion passenger
  • The most prominent speed zone is 60km/h with 15 crashes [followed by 100km/h with 9 crashes and 80km/h with 6 crashes]
  • The most prominent day of week is Saturday with 9 crashes [followed by Sunday and Wednesday 7 crashes each]
  • The most prominent age groups were between 25 to 49 and 60 to 74
  • Police Region breakdown increase on 2020
    • South Eastern increased by 5 (or 250%)
    • Brisbane increased by 5 (or 100%)
    • North Coast increased by 5 (or 71.4%)
    • Central remained at 2
    • Southern decreased by 4 (or 57.1%)
    • Northern decreased by 2 (or 50%)
    • Far North decreased by 1 (or 33.3%).

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