BC municipality asking province to toughen motorcycle licence laws

This spring, a BC municipality and the CoreySafe advocacy group are once again pressuring provincial officials to toughen motorcycle licencing rules.

According to CBC, the District of Kitimat is working with CoreySafe, a non-profit group that’s trying to improve motorcycle safety. Coreysafe was founded by Denise Lodge in the aftermath of her son Corey’s death in a motorcycle crash. He died only hours after receiving his motorcycle learner’s permit, and part of Lodge’s focus is to tighten the regulations surrounding motorcycle licencing.

Currently in BC, a motorcyclist gets a learner’s permit after passing a written test; after 14 days with a learner’s permit, they can challenge the road test. After 30 days with a learner’s permit, upon successful completion of a road test, a rookie rider can get their unrestricted motorcycle licence, allowing anything from a Honda Rebel to a Suzuki Hayabusa.

Lodge says the province needs to move to a graduated licencing system instead, with more safeguards. She’d like to see motorcyclists required to pass a riding test before getting out on the street, and required to ride under supervision for a year before earning a full licence.

The District of Kitimat has joined in her push for more regulations, and is also urging other municipalities to do the same, says CBC, bringing the issue up with the Union of B.C. Municipalities for the past six years. This year, the District is asking other municipalities to write letters to put pressure on the province to make changes to the rulebook. Despite its efforts so far, there is still no change in the law, although ICBC told CBC it is focusing on battling things like distracted drivers and red-light runners in an attempt to improve motorcycle safety.

7 thoughts on “BC municipality asking province to toughen motorcycle licence laws”

  1. I agree and I’m a big proponent of bike size limit and then taking another proficiency test on the next size up. Limiting power by chip is easily defeated and the size and weight of the bike is part of the restriction. Europe and places do it correct; everyone should start small and test again like flying an aircraft, one doesn’t get their licence and jump into a heavy turbo prop or “jumbo jet!” Skills take time to master and then comes experience; we are failing the new riders! Dealers should not be selling big heavy or fast super sports to new riders. I know in North America it is one of the biggest argument ( will cut sales) and why we don’t get smaller displacement bikes.

  2. There is a very good reason that motorcycle safety has shifted focus from the rider to other motorists. Research suggests that awareness campaigns are needed to reduce accident rates and if you haven’t noticed, that has been the safety campaign for the last couple of years.
    Of course there is no panacea to address all the variables, and like all problems, it’s better to apply resources where they’ll be most effective.

  3. with pretty much all motorcycles now running fuel injection controlled by computers it would be a simple matter of inserting the appropriate chip to hold power down Simply limiting fuel at the injectors would keep even a Hayabusa down to about 40 horsepower. As experience grows so can power levels. Size restrictions
    are problematic as the first bike must be sold or traded in at a loss to get to the next level. That is not always successful

  4. A written test will allow you to ride with some decent limits in Ontario (M1) In Alberta all you need is to be accompanied by a Class 6 (motorcycle endorsement) but that escort can be in a car. You don’t even need the written test to take recognized rider training, unlike in Ontario. Expecting a new rider to be with a licensed rider for the entire 1st year could prove “problematic” Instead of restricting motorcycles to CC size, they could look at HP numbers as there can & is a world of difference in an S40 (650 cc single) & any of the 4 cylinder 650 cc motorcycle & most of the 650 cc twins

      1. I guess North American politicians and bureaucrats can never get things right. Australia, New Zealand, Japan and United Kingdom all seem to have reasonable graduated licensing systems for motorcycles. Although not perfect, they are far better than those found here.

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