You are here
Home > FEMA news > MEP’s want Intelligent Speed Assistance on motorcycles

MEP’s want Intelligent Speed Assistance on motorcycles

The European Parliament wants robust road safety measures, such as a 30 km per hour speed limit and zero-tolerance for drink-driving, but it also suggests Intelligent Speed Assistance on motorcycles.

EP rapporteur Elena Kountoura said: “For far too long, Europeans have had to live with an unacceptable death toll on our roads. It is realistic to aim to halve road deaths by 2030, if the EU and member states commit to better road safety, coupled with strong political will and sufficient funding. We already know what kills on the road, therefore we are calling on the Commission and governments to apply specific life-saving measures to support these efforts, such as lower speed limits, especially creating a default limit of 30 km/h for cities, an accelerated modal shift to other forms of transport, and a new European Agency for Road Transport.” (photo by EP)

On 5 October 2021, the plenary meeting of the European Parliament adopted the draft report of the Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Elena Kountoura with a large majority of votes. The report contains many measures to enhance road safety in Europe. One of them is the introduction of Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) on motorcycles.

In general, the European Parliament sees a large contribution to road safety in a change to active mobility (walking and cycling) and public transport. Also, better infrastructure, a European road transport agency, speed reduction, and enforcement should play a large role in pushing back accidents where people get killed or seriously injured.

In a so-called own-initiative report from the European Parliament, the Parliament reacts on the EU Road Safety Policy Framework 2021-2030 – Recommendations on next steps towards ‘Vision Zero’ (2021/2014(INI)).

In this framework, the European Commission has defined several Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) with the aim to reduce accidents where people get killed or severely injured. The Parliament supports the measures of the Commission but wants to go further. To start with, the Parliament wants the Commission to define KPIs that include L-category vehicles (e.g., motorcycles).

To highlight some of the demands of the MEPs:

  • The Parliament calls for more investments in safe infrastructure with a focus on zones with the highest number of accidents; a road classification framework that better matches speed limits to road design and lay-out, in line with the safe system approach.
  • On the vehicle side, the Parliament calls for inclusion of vehicle safety features in the periodical technical inspections. It also calls for ABS for all motorcycles and to fit intelligent speed assistance systems in all new vehicles, including motorcycles. Also, eCall should be fitted on motorcycles.
  • Regarding ‘new mobility’ (the electric micro mobility devices like electric kick scooters) the Parliament raises serious concerns related not only to the safety of the devices themselves, but also to their safe use in traffic.
  • With regards to safe road use, the Parliament calls for stricter alcohol limits and enforcement. It also calls for a 30 km/h speed limit in residential areas, with the possibility for higher limits in main arterial roads, and in areas with many pedestrians and cyclists. To enforce these limits Member States should prioritise investing in speed enforcement and high-quality communication.
  • Finally, the Parliament calls on the European Commission to assess making theoretical and practical training and tests mandatory to obtaining a driving licence for all categories of powered two-wheeled vehicles.

‘We do not support any technical features that take away the control of the motorcycle from the rider.’

FEMA’s General Secretary Dolf Willigers (photo by Wim Taal)

Comment from FEMA General Secretary Dolf Willigers:” We welcome this report and almost all measures that are proposed by the Parliament. In a letter to the European Commission earlier this year we already asked for the inclusion of powered two-wheelers in the Key Performance Indicators, better training, driving license tests that are more tailored to risk assessment and risk avoidance instead of low-speed technical skills and safer infrastructure. These are demands that are also in the report of the parliament.”

Dolf continues: “We do not support any technical features that take away the control of the motorcycle from the rider and therefore – although we understand the need to reduce speed in certain situations – we see any kind of Intelligent Speed Assistance that interferes with engine control as a danger for motorcyclists, as we have already discussed with the European Commission in 2019. The Commission agreed with us that you cannot just fit ISA on motorcycles.”

Top photograph courtesy of Ducati

This article is subject to FEMA’s copyright