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How money helps improve motorcycle safety

Swedish motorcyclists’ organisation SMC shows that financial support from authorities can seriously help improve road safety. Grants allow the real experts to work on motorcycle safety.

For a few years, SMC has been granted support from the Swedish Transport Administration, which has been a targeted grant to organisations that work actively with road safety. Now the Swedish Transport Administration will instead initiate idea-driven public partnerships with not-for-profit organisations. This has not been offered to SMC.

In SMC’s final report of the organisational grant of SEK 200,000 (€18,625), SMC describes part of the road safety work carried out during 2021.

Report 2021
The number of fatal accidents on powered two-wheelers continued to decrease in 2021 compared with the previous year, while new sales reached record levels and the number of motorcycles in traffic continued to increase. SMC’s objective of reduced accident rates has been met. Preliminary figures for seriously injured in 2021 also point downwards.

In 2021, SMC has conducted several road safety-enhancing measures among Swedish motorcyclists. Here is a selection:

  • SMC has informed about traffic safety via newspapers, websites, social media, conferences, meetings, trade fairs and the like.
  • SMC has arranged varied training aimed at different motorcycle owners throughout the country throughout the motorcycle season when it has been possible. SMC has followed the authorities’ recommendations to reduce the spread of covid-19. The training has been approved by all insurance companies. Instructors and resource persons in SMC School have been trained, examined and trained.
  • During the year, SMC’s continuing education received continued approval from DVR, which certifies education and training in Europe. SMC is still the only trainer in the Nordic region to have received the motorcycle manufacturers’ quality stamp ‘European Motorcycle Training Quality Label’.
  • During the year, the member magazine MC-Folket tested motorcycles and motorcycle-related products. In connection with these tests, safety-enhancing equipment has been highlighted.
    The member magazine MC-Folket carried out tests of ABS brakes on gravel as reported. The article was translated into English and thus spread throughout the world.
  • During the year, SMC presented statistics from Svedea on the most common accident and how to avoid it – overturning when stationary.
  • SMC has been an international driving force in road safety issues through FEMA, FIM, FIA and NMR. It has been about certification of continuing education, autonomous vehicles, accessibility, road environment, traffic offenses and the like.
  • During the year, SMC published the report ‘Serious traffic offenses – with a focus on two-wheeled vehicles 8.0’. It contains statistics based on driving license holdings among killed and seriously injured on two-wheeled motorcycles during the period 2011-2020. The report has attracted a great deal of attention among motorcyclists, the media and other actors who work with road safety. Previous version has been translated into English and distributed globally.
  • SMC has urged members to report deficiencies in the road environment to road managers to prevent accidents.
  • SMC has continued to urge members to report accidents to VTI’s national database to capture accidents during ongoing and completed road works.
  • During the year, SMC sent out the publication ‘Safer roads and streets for motorcyclists and moped riders’ to 290 municipalities, 21 regions, the Swedish Transport Administration’s regions and officials and politicians locally, regionally and nationally.
  • SMC has pointed out how the Swedish Transport Agency’s regulations regarding road construction can be improved for increased motorcycle safety.
  • During the year, SMC responded to 55 referrals and opinions, most of which deal with road safety.
  • During the year, SMC published 40 recalls of motorcycles and motorcycle-related products based on the Product Safety Act.
  • SMC has, after consultation with the Swedish Transport Administration, informed about how to prepare for driving tests to increase the degree of approval and thereby also reduce queues for the tests. SMC participates in a collaboration on motorcycle driving licenses led by the Swedish Transport Administration.
  • During the year, SMC conducted a survey among those who took a motorcycle driving license 2018-2021. The results have been shared with the Swedish Transport Administration, the Swedish Transport Agency, STR, TR and VTI.
  • During the year, SMC conducted a survey among those who were supervisors in private practice driving for motorcyclists. The results have been shared with the Swedish Transport Administration, the Swedish Transport Agency, STR, TR and VTI.
  • SMC has informed about the most common causes of motorcycle accidents and how they can be avoided.
  • SMC has sent out the Medical Card to 65,000 members – a card that is placed in the helmet and speeds up adequate care in the event of an accident.
  • In various contexts, SMC has emphasized the importance of including motorcycles and mopeds in the standard for autonomous vehicles.
  • SMC has courted municipalities and the Swedish Transport Administration regionally to be allowed to drive motorcycles in bus lanes.
  • SMC participates in standardization work concerning personal protective equipment for motorcycles and during the year a new standard was approved which SMC informed members, motorcyclists and others in the motorcycle industry about.
  • SMC has been in contact with the Swedish Transport Agency, technical experts and manufacturers of communication equipment regarding the new helmet standard that has now been adopted.
  • Together with various actors, including the Swedish Transport Administration, SMC has worked out and conducted an OECD ITF workshop on motorcycle safety.
  • SMC has sent Full Control to all traffic schools and distributes the publication and films to everyone who works with the education and training of motorcyclists.
  • In addition, SMC has met motorcyclists in all contexts. Of course, SMC has always advocated our good and healthy values.
  • Through our involvement in FIM, we have been involved in the development of standards in the Connected Motorcycle Consortium, which enables motorcycles to communicate with other vehicles.
  • During the year, SMC pointed out that motorcycles and mopeds must be included in all reasoning concerning charging infrastructure.
  • During the year, SMC, in consultation with the Swedish Transport Administration, presented the motorcyclists’ views on the choice of electric roads. SMC has also sent friction measurements that show that an electric road has the same friction as a slippery slope and requested action.
  • SMC has been in contact with the government’s investigators regarding the phasing out of fossil-fuelled vehicles, diesel and petrol and has emphasized the need to include motorcycles and mopeds in this context. SMC has informed motorcycle owners about E10.
  • During the year, SMC paid attention to slippery pavement on roads, carried out its own friction measurements and communicated the results to the Swedish Transport Administration and motorcyclists to reduce the risk of accidents.
  • SMC has made it possible for VTI to carry out a study of the effects of continuing education and to use member and participant registers in future research.
  • SMC responded to 21 county transport plans due to the fact that the Swedish Transport Administration in reporting on the government assignment for increased motorcycle safety refers to the fact that SMC and the Swedish Transport Administration shall cooperate regionally.
  • SMC has helped the Swedish Transport Administration to disseminate information about where road works are carried out that may impair the safety of motorcyclists.
  • In various internal forums, SMC’s management has informed members about the importance of respecting applicable speed limits.

Source: SMC

Top photograph courtesy of Hanna Maxstad

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