We’re all for motorcycle rider training. A bit of classroom time goes a long way in educating bikers in the ways (and dangers) of the road, but many beginning motorcyclists skip the courses because they cost money – something that seems to be in short supply as soon as you enter the world of two-wheeled transportation.
Some good folks in Hutt City, New Zealand thought about this problem for a while and came up with a solution: riding lessons for $20. That’s right, $20. The Wellington Scoop says the lessons are a co-operative effort between police, various levels of government, and insurance bodies.
Think it’s a good plan? We suggest you take the idea to your local police department and see what they say – they’ll probably tell you staffing woes would prohibit the cheap classes, but it’s worth a try. After all, if it makes riders smarter, it’ll make their jobs easier, and keep us all safer.
The best way to learn/handle a bike is start riding in the dirt.
Actually Caledon OPP have done safety days.
I strongly believe in rider training and don’t consider the basic parking lot courses adequate before venturing onto the street. I administrated the courses at a community college and it is a cash cow for the colleges.
You are right they provide bikes, space, instructors but their GL insurance covers as they don’t leave college grounds. We need good quality on road instructor led training to equip riders for increasingly busy roads. There are some good programs out their but not universally available in all areas of Canada. This needs to be addressed by the motorcycling community, backed by insurers, the industry and motorcycling organizations.
In Canada it seems “we” are not into preventative measures…we are more into firefighting than safety conciousness…I paid $450+GST for the course I took (worth every penny!), but they provided the bikes, gas, insurance, maintenance, etc…although I’m not sure it is a money issue, I think it is more of a peer pressure/macho thing…I don’t need training, that’s just not cool…too many squids, not enough time…now if a rider safety course was a requirement to get the license…but we really don’t need more laws…
Who knows what the answer is?
In Ottawa we have a very good program (OSC) taught by volunteers. The classes still cost several hundred dollars. Granted they maintain a fleet of bikes for the beginners class, but I expect a lot of that money goes into insurance.
I doubt having police run the course would save any money. Forcing new riders to supply thier own bike could save a bit, but I expect that until the insurance companies are on board 100% and covering the cost of the insurance (on the promise of long term reducing in pay-outs) we aren’t going to see really cheap classes in Canada.