A graduated-licensing program and
different-coloured licence plates for new motorcycle riders were two
of the recommendations by a British Columbia "death panel" review
The B.C. Coroners Service review
focussed on tougher rules for new riders and making other drivers pay
attention to motorcycles on the road.
Solicitor General Kash Heed, who is also
the province’s public safety minister, announced the recommendations.
"It’s clear that with more riders on the road, motorcycle safety
is an area where improvements need to be made," said Heed.
There were 286 motorcycle-related
deaths reported from 2000 to 2007, an increase in the fatality rate
that prompted the chief coroner of British Columbia to convene a
"death review panel" in November 2008.
The panel made nine recommendations:
require any street helmet to be certified by DOT, Snell, BSI, CSA, or
ECE; make eye protection mandatory — meaning anything from
sunglasses to a face shield; establish a graduated-licence program
for new riders, even if they already have an auto driver’s licence —
and with respect to that one, make a new rider wait longer before
taking the skills test, set a zero blood-alcohol limit for them,
tighten controls on new riders who have less than eight years of
experience driving cars, change the colour of licence plates used by
learners, and tie the power of the bike a new rider can use to the power
of bike used to take the road test.
More of the nine recommendations: limit
MP3 player and phone use to a single earpiece; improve the class 5
(car driver) training process to better teach car drivers how to
properly observe motorcycles on the road; re-evaluate training
schools and instructors; teach riders the importance of wearing full gear during the learning phase; improve the collection of
data in motorcycle collision investigations; and finally, "That the
role, definition and accountability of supervisors be reviewed and
that an information package be created and made available to new
riders to provide to their supervisors."
A statistical review was carried out on
all 286 deaths and a more in-depth analysis was conducted on six of
the cases. Panel members included representatives from the BCCS,
police, ICBC, OSMV, B.C. Coalition of Motorcyclists, B.C. and Canada
safety councils, Motorcycle and Moped Industry Council, B.C. training
institutions and the riding community.
To see the recommendations, go to the
B.C. government website.