West Midlands Police: Police biker safety course clocks up 1500 students
September 20, 2012, 1:54 pm
Fifteen hundred bikers are riding more safely on roads in the Midlands thanks to a national imitative to reduce motorcycling casualties.
Trained biker cops from West Midlands Police have been running Bikesafe for the last 10 years and on Saturday (15 September) the 1500th student completed the course.
The scheme is available to everyday motorcyclists across the country and is run by the majority of police forces. In the West Midlands a workshop is held twice a month between March and October.
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Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale attended the latest course on Saturday to show his support and encourage more people to sign up for future events.
He said: “Motorcyclists account for 1 per cent of road users but 20 per cent of casualties and Bikesafe’s aim is to drive this statistic down.
“Not all accidents are the fault of the rider and motorcyclists will always be vulnerable, but we can cut the number of casualties through courses such as Bikesafe by increasing hazard awareness and promoting the importance of good bike skills, at a higher level than most other assessments.
“It’s a brilliant opportunity for bikers to have their skills assessed by a trained police motorcyclist and the feedback I had from participants on Saturday was absolutely fantastic.”
Rich Brown, 34, attended Saturday’s Bikesafe course and said: “Although really only a taster, I think there are many of us on the course who are intent on continuing our training at an advanced level and hopefully spread the word to our other biking mates.
“It was fun to be taught by such a good group who were always professional, courteous and a good laugh.
“Considering most of us only come in to contact with the police after an incident, it was good to mix with them in a relatively informal situation.
Sergeant Richard Breeze, from the force’s Collision Investigation Unit and who runs the course, said: “We get so much support for Bikesafe which is great because the course really does make a difference.
“I would encourage anyone with a full motorcycle licence to consider registering on one of our future courses, by visiting the Bikesafe website.
“Anyone who takes part will leave the workshop with a greater understanding of the risks involved in riding motorcycles on today’s roads and be better equipped to combat them.
Extreme stunt rider Craig Jones held a demonstration at the latest workshop and assists with the delivery of the course.
He said: “The skills that I have as an extreme rider can give you the edge in a potentially difficult situation.
“What may seem to be an unlikely partnership with the police is what makes this so effective.
I want people to understand how to really control a bike which, could one day, save their life.”
Anyone who is interested in registering should visit www.bikesafe.co.uk and click on the West Midlands area.
Officers who run the scheme will be at the NEC Bike Show from Monday (24 September) and until Sunday 2 Dec, where anyone interested in taking part can book for future courses.