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Monday, 30 January 2012

ISLE OF MAN VIDEO

Isle of Man Motorcycle Race

The Isle of Man TT was for many years the most prestigious motor-cycle
race in the world.  The racing is held on public roads closed for
racing by an Act of Tynwald (the parliament of the Isle of Man).  It is
the oldest motor-cycle racing circuit still in use.  Between 1907 and
2009 there have been 237 deaths during official practices or races on
the Snaefell Mountain Course.  The official lap record for the Snaefell
Mountain Course is 17 Minutes and 12.30 seconds at an average speed
of 131.578 mph.

 http://www.angelfire.com/ak2/intelligencerreport/insane_race.html

Friday, 27 January 2012

COMPULSORY HI VIZ INCOMING - JAN 28, 2012.

Laws making high visibility clothing compulsory for Victorian motorcycle
& scooter riders have their supporters among riders. I'm not one of them. 

By all means wear hi viz gear if it makes you feel better on the road.
It's the law I oppose, not the gear. The law is based on emotion not
science and, while at first it may not be too much of a problem for most,
it is open to abuse down the track, like the TAC tax and WRB.

French riders will suffer a hi viz law from 2013. However, the French
law won't cover small motorcycles, scooters or bicycles. Lots of logic in that.
Target big bikes.

http://www.benefiscal.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=10050.0

Here in OZ the Victoria Police have been pushing five types of COMPULSORY
protective clothing including reflective, hi viz areas. The five types are 1. helmet;
2. jacket; 3. gloves; 4. pants and 5. boots. If they get their way, a road authority
will supply a list of clothing you are allowed to wear and police will be happy
to pull you up to check you comply.

Victoria Police have put this plan on the record at the 2011 Parliamentary
Inquiry public hearings. They want front ID too and would be happy to see all
motorcycles & scooters fitted with tracking tags to facilitate enforcement and
"intelligence gathering". I kid you not. Read the Hansard transcripts from the inquiry at:

www.rsc@parliament.vic.gov.au

Now it may be that there are riders out there who can cover their rear number plate with
their foot but I can't. If those riders exist I'd say they are a tiny tiny minority.
Mr Walshe's quotes, above, would seem to me to be antibike propaganda.
Look for the Road Safety Committee motorcycle safety inquiry on the Parliamentary website.
There's more on this in earlier blogs.

But back to hi viz clothing. Here's a series of emails between me and he-who-shall-remain-nameless
about hi viz laws for riders.

Thursday, January 26, 2012, 9:54:13 PM, he wrote:

No  big deal after riders dug in.

Anyway I'm all for it for night time visibility.  Motorcyclists  can't  be  seen at night with totally back
gear with no reflectors. There will never be peace while motorcyclists get killed. Eliminating the
"didn't see you" needs to be one factor in a motorcyclists arsenal.

If  you  wanted  to  get  a  quick  read on France's hi viz rule, this
article gives a good run down:

http://news.motorbiker.org/blogs.nsf/dx/france-about-the-hi-viz-law-for-motorcycles.htm "

Regards
..........


Good morning ...

I'm surprised by your response.

Holding  those who  cause crashes responsible and enforcing the law would be  a more effective
way to stop bike casualties but that won't happen when even the victims' reps are all for more
restrictions targeting riders.

Ways to eliminate the "I didn't see you" factor is to enforce existing laws  and  to  gather  quality
data  from  crash  scenes then have it objectively   evaluated.   Those   causing   crashes  should
be  held accountable.

Restrictive laws on riders just makes them more outcast in the eyes of the majority of road users
and discourages police/courts from ensuring victims  of  a  lot  of  crashes  get  justice. When
justice fails the victims  lose  their  rights, stand to get less compensation and their rehab  is
underfunded.  This  effects  families,  work places, social networks  and  more. This is why we
fought lights-on to a stand still. Same principle.

Sit  thropugh  a few court cases. Woodend's "cup cake killer" comes to mind as a massive
miscarriage of justice. Don't worry it's pretty much under the carpet now. But there's plenty more
if anyone's interested enough to sit in public galleries and observe.

Compulsory  Hi  Viz  puts  the  onus  on the rider to be seen, not the driver to look.

The hi viz rules start in France in 2013.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne

On 27/01/2012, at 7:07 AM, Damien Cognotto OAM wrote:

Read the article.

Several points:

1.  Australian riders have shown they will not protest in numbers that
make a difference to the powers that be. EG the TAC antibike tax.

2.  They are making hi viz clothing compulsory in France. That changes
the  riders' legal status and in Australia would alter rights in court
and  to  compensation.  The French law has the potential to be a legal
nightmare in our Australian context.

3.  Once  the hi viz law is in it can be manipulated, expanded. EG The
TAC  antibike  tax started as a $50 flat tax. Then it was indexed. Now
it goes up each year. A reflective arm band could become two then a
vest depending on road authorities and rider reps.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne

Friday, January 27, 2012, 9:47:42 AM, you wrote:

Yes yes yes but really mate I realise you have been without bike for a
while.  Suggest  you get out on the Guzzi day and night and experience
the  real world of motorcycling. I'll be surprised if your not at what
actually goes on. My beliefs are based on what I see riding just about
every day.

Regards
...

From: Damien Cognotto OAM <d.codognotto.oam@bigpond.com>
Date: Friday, January 27, 2012, 3:47:47 PM
Subject: France's hi viz rule - linked article gives it a quick run down

Hello ...

When you run out of reasonable arguments supporting your case, you
can always get personal.

I suggest you have a look at casualty bike crash stats and try to work
out how many riders are hit by something at night. Visibility is about
crashes  involving  more  than one vehicle. Then you might try to work
out  how  effective  reflective  armbands/vests  are  at  night. Bikes
already have lights and reflectors facing all directions.

Then have a think about the damge enabling legislation/regulation will
do  to riders standing in our legal/compensation system after a crash.
It's  bad  enough  now. Get in to a few court rooms and ... But that's
not the real world is it?

"I  didn't  see  the  bike" is LEGITIMISED by compulsory hi visibility
clothing.  If  you'd  been  part  of the lights-on struggle you'd know
that. If you'd sat through the Parliamentary Inquiry hearings as I did
you'd know that police pushed for compulsory hi viz clothing more than
once. Go to the website and read the Hansard.

Revs Magazine's lawyers published an opinion, years ago, on lights-on.
If  the  ADR  had  gone  through  the  way the road authorities wanted
motorcycles  would  have  been  liable if a driver said "I did not see
him.  He didn't have his light on." regardless if it was on or not. If
it  was  off  the  bike  was  unroadworthy,  an  offence  with serious
insurance implications. Same principle.

TAC  has  already  made  noises  about  "contibutory negligence" where
protective clothing for riders is concerned.

The French law is dangerous.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne


Thursday, 26 January 2012

COMPULSORY HI VIZ VESTS.

"The French Government has finally confirmed how it will implement new regulations for motorcyclists regarding reflective clothing and number plates.

As of 1st Jan 2013 it will be an offence, punishable through a fine and the loss of points, (in France you lose them, don't gain them) not to wear at least 150cm2 of relective clothing between the waist and the shoulders and not to be using an enlarged number plate.


You may remember that this was first mooted as an accident reduction issue, but most accidents involve 125cc bikes and below, and these are exempt from the new rules.


Riders in France must already use their headlights all the time and carry reflective stickers on their helmets.


You may also remember that the French Government then said the regulations were to ensure other motorists could see if riders were lying in the middle of the road at night...


FFMC's Frederic Jeorge said "It will be considered almost as bad as driving without a helmet, even if you are wearing full leather armour, on a bike with the headlights on and knowing that our helmets already have 4 mandatory reflective stickers... Also, it will NOT include the mopeds and 125cc, where's the logic?"


Logic? We are not sure that's generally considered when creating legislation for motorcyclists.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

WIN $250 DRAGGIN JEANS

All scooter owners and riders are invited to take part in the 2012 VACC Scooter Awareness Rally. Enjoy a free, fun day out while raising scooter awareness and reminding road users, and government, that scooters are good for our roads and the environment.



DATE:      Sunday, February 19, 2012.

TIME:       9.30am for a 10am departure.

START:    Luna Park, St Kilda.

FINISH:   Argyle Square, Lygon Street, Carlton.


For details visit  vacc.com.au  or  phone 03 9829 1148. 

POKER RUN

GOOD AS GOLD (QLD)

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

SCOOTERS ON A CAR LICENCE

SCOOTERS ON A CAR LICENCE

Power-assisted bicycles are legal on Victorian roads without requirements for any licence, registration or insurance. Small automatic scooters have to be registered and insured and they have better tyres and brakes than bicycles. They also have lights and horns. Riders of small scooters have to be licenced and wear a proper helmet so they are by definition, safer than power-assisted bicycle riders. 

Hollie Black is a strong advocate for scooters on a car licence in Victoria. She made a submission on the subject to the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety in 2010. In July 2010 Hollie presented the following paper as input to the Motorcycle Tourism Strategy Plan being developed by Tourism Victoria.


L to R: Hollie Black, Damien and The Bear, Peter Thoeming of Australian Road Rider.


POLICE PERSUITS

Letters
The Herald Sun

Six dead after police persuits in just six months. There has got to be a  better  way.  But  police  command seem obsessed with big expensive persuit vehicles.

"Victoria  Police Technical Specifications For High Speed Motorcycles" states "The motorcycles offered must be capable of speeds in Excess of 180  kph  for both long and short periods ..." Why? City traffic often crawls at less than 10 kph.

Mid-sized  motorcycles  cost  less  to buy and run. They can carry the required  payload and can cope with gridlock. Used in pairs they offer a  safer   work  place  for  both  male  and female officers and more effective enforcement particularly where in-car offences are concerned.

Paramedics are currently testing 600 cc scooters in Melbourne.

Damien Codognotto
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne

RADIO SHOW

ON RIDE  THIS WEEK

·         We take a closer look at the motorcycle involvement in the SBS program Houses and talk with stars Paulie Fenech and Angry Anderson as well as Beno from Hunter Motorcycles.

·         Angry talks about his involvement in the Black Dog Ride to Central Australia, his work with men’s mental health issues, why he reckons cars are the enemy and his views on young people and safe riding.

·         We revisit interviews with Ten Sports Daryl Beattie, Australian Grand Prix CEO Andrew Westacott and Australian Motorcycle News Editor Sam Maclachlan to evaluate Casey Stoner’s Chances in 2012.

·         And we look closely at the Bathurst Street and Custom Motorcycle Show on Feb 4.

·         Plus lots of news, views and a music tribute from JJJ's Greatest Hits.

TUNE IN in Sydney live on 90.5 FM and across Australia on www.2ccrfm.comfrom 10pm -Midnight EST on Thursday.

Please check out Facebook and if you like the programme don't forget to Like this page and recommend it to you friends.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/RIDE-on-2ccrfm-with-Greg-Hirst/265400733475447              

Ride                                                                                                

What’s the next best thing to having some motorcycle fun? Listening to others who are having it as well!And you can do that on Thursdays for two hours from 10pm EDT. on 2CCR FM 90.5 when national motorcycling identity Greg Hirst will entertain you with:

      ·Humorous stories of a motorcycle nature
      ·Interviews with well known motorcycle riders
      ·Stories from Aussie motorcycle clubs about their positive activities
      ·Update of key some motorcycling issues
      ·News on local and national motorcycle events (especially for those listening online)
      ·Studio guests to talk about their personal motorcycling experiences

And lots of great Aussie rock, blues and alternate music, plus a little overseas stuff. So listen in every Thursday for some motorcycle radio fun: on radio in Sydney or online on www.2ccrfm.comaround Australia.2CCR broadcasts all its programmes online and so Ridecan be heard in NSW, Victoria and Tasmania at 10pm,Qld at 9pm, South Australia and Broken Hill 9.30pm, the Northern Territory at 8.30pm and in Western Australia at 7pm.

        ·For more information contact Greg on www.greghirstenterprises.com.au

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

VMAG MEETS IN EARLY FEBRUARY 2012

In a 2010 discussion paper on the new Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Group (MAG) I warned that MAG had to have an independent secretariate or Vicroads would use the minutes etc. to suit  VicRoads/TAC/Police.  The Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Council (VMAC) had become a rubber stamp for the public "service" and constituted sham consultation with stakeholders.

Sanitising minutes is a way some "administrators" use to control committees. Keeping minutes late so committee members waste valuable meeting time attempting to correct changes  and trying to get omissions included that discussion time on matters  of  importance to riders is lost. In my opinion minutes manipulation was a major problem for VMAC. MAG meets only four times a year.

Presumably that's eight hours "consultation" with selected stakeholders each year. Time wasted on incorrect minutes is significant.

MAG members are in effect picked by VicRoads. Rider Reps who don't fit the VicRoads/TAC/Police preferred pattern don't get a seat on MAG.

MAG  rider reps should ring the MAG Secretary at VicRoads and ask why the agenda for the coming February meeting is late and what stakeholders can put on that agenda. I reckon the answers will be the VMAC favourites, "unforseen complications held up the agenda" and "the agenda is already set so stakeholders cand add nothing", perhaps not in those words. A late agenda item may be put in general business and discussed if there is time. With only eight hours a year, available discussion time for important motorcycle community generated items will be minimal or nil.

MAG  should  have  an  independent  secretary  and a neutral, central meeting place like the Melbourne Town Hall.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

LETTERS TO EDITORS

Independent Riders' Group member Peter Hawker from Sydney had a letter published in the Jan 11 - Feb 7, 2012  issue of Motorcycle Trader Magazine.

"ON THE RIGHT PATH"

Peter asks a valid question about motorcycle & scooter parking.  Victoria has had free footpath parking since the MRA won a political fight over bike parking in the 1980s. Statewide Victorian riders can park as long as they like on footpaths as long as they do not obstruct pedestrians. Common sense prevails. In over 25 years complaints have been minimal. It works. 

So why don't we see motorcyclists' representative organisations in the other states and territories lobbying for the same parking deal for riders outside Victoria?

Also in the Motorcycle Trader Mailbox Lindsay Swift has a serious go at the Victorian Transport Accident Commission (TAC) for its' shock/horror TV ads on the dangers of motorcycling to motorcyclists. He points out that TAC does not make ads on the dangers to other road users drivers abusing mobile phones.

The TAC is a semi-government insurance monopoly with a compulsory product, CTP insurance. In my opinion TAC should not be sponsoring high-profile organisations like footy teams, it should be putting our money into real safety research, better rehab facilities and no-claim-bonuses for good drivers/riders. 

But TAC's Board of nine doesn't have any members with transport knowledge, let alone road safety expertise. All nine are corporates, financiers and administrators, probably with a healthy profit motive. I think having a motorcyclist on the TAC Board would improve motorcycle & scooter safety, see more of our funds spent on the victims of road trauma and see an end to TAC antibike propaganda on TV.

I write maybe twenty letters to editors a year. Maybe half a dozen get printed. If you feel strongly about a bike issue, write to your daily and local papers. If you get a run you get to a lot of people who don't ride. That's important.

Letters
The Age

Admin  staff  cuts are not the only way the Bailieu Government can cut
police costs.

"Downsize"  the  motorcycle  unit, not numbers, bikes. Police ride 200
kph  luxury  BMWs  in  traffic oftem moving at 10 kph. At over $30,000
each,  these  are  expensive  bikes.  The  1200  cc  BMs  patrol  solo
effectively making the unit a boys club.

Mid-sized  motorcycles  cost  less  to buy and run, carry the required
payload,  cope  with  gridlock  and, used in pairs, offer a safer work
place  for  both  male  and  female officers.

Paramedics are currently testing 600 cc scooters in Melbourne.

Patrol  pairs  mean  police  are  more visible and enforcement is more
efficient,  particularly  for  in-car  offences like child restraints,
seat belt use and phone offences.

Taxpayers  will  get  more  for  their police dollar with a motorcycle
squad better suited to today's traffic.

Damien Codognotto
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne



Letters
The Herald Sun

Petrol  prices to top $1.60 a litre!

Higher  fuel costs mean more motorcycles, scooters and bicycles on our
roads.  Many  people  want  the  savings  in time and money from using
single-track vehicles.

More  bikes  mean  benefits  for  car  drivers.  Traffic flows better,
there's less pollution, costly damage to infrastructure is reduced and
more car parking becomes available. And, experienced riders make safer
drivers.

Rising fuel costs for CITY road users are not all bad.

Damien Codognotto
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne






HIRSTY'S ON THE WIRELESS AGAIN

ON RIDE  THIS WEEK


·         Angry Anderson talks about his new involvement with Fraser Motorcycles, his new 883 Sportster and     why he wears a full face helmet

·         Paul Riley from Skill Master Motorcycle Services talks about motorcycle training and last year’s Breakfast Torque at Loftus Oval

·         Streak from Ozstoc talks from Queensland about the national gathering of Honda ST Owners

·         Plus we hear about some developments for Victory Motorcycles in Australia

·         Plus lots of news, views and music from Australia and beyond

TUNE IN in Sydney live on 90.5 FM and across Australia on www.2ccrfm.comfrom 10pm -Midnight EST on Thursday.                                                                                                                                                        

Please check out Facebook and if you like the programme don't forget to Like this page and recommend it to you friends.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/RIDE-on-2ccrfm-with-Greg-Hirst/265400733475447                Ride                                                                                              

What’s the next best thing to having some motorcycle fun? Listening to others who are having it as well! And you can do that on Thursdays for two hours from 10pm EDT. on 2CCR FM 90.5 when national motorcycling identity Greg Hirst will entertain you with
     
·Humorous stories of a motorcycle nature
     
·Interviews with well known motorcycle riders
     
·Stories from Aussie motorcycle clubs about their positive activities
     
·Update of key some motorcycling issues
     
·News on local and national motorcycle events (especially for those listening online)
     
·Studio guests to talk about their personal motorcycling experiences

And lots of great Aussie rock, blues and alternate music, plus a little overseas stuff. So listen in every Thursday for some motorcycle radio fun: on radio in Sydney or online on www.2ccrfm.com around Australia.2CCR broadcasts all its programmes online and so Ridecan be heard in NSW, Victoria and Tasmania at 10pm,Qld at 9pm, South Australia and Broken Hill 9.30pm, the Northern Territory at 8.30pm and in Western Australia at 7pm.
       
·For more information contact Greg on www.greghirstenterprises.com.au

Monday, 16 January 2012

SUPERBIKE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP - FEB 24 TO 26, 2012.

PHILLIP ISLAND SUPERS

VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA.

If you have not visited this legendary motorcycle circuit, you are missing a great riders' experience.

FEB 24 TO 26, 2012.

SUPERBIKE INFO LINE:

1300 728 007

BOOK ONLINE:

www.worldsbk.com.au



THE PHILLIP ISLAND CLASSIC - FEB 27 TO 29, 2012.

Phillip Island Classic Racing will be held from Friday 27 to Sunday 29 January, 2012.  

This year the Phillip Island Track Committee has decided to allow camping from 4pm on the Thursday night through until the morning of Monday 30th - a good option for those lacking homely accommodation on the Island.  Camping will be limited and must be pre-booked by the 25th January prior to the event – no rolling up and hoping to score a site!  Expect to pay $65 (no concessions) for 3 nights, but kids under 15 camp free.

This website link below takes you to the Information page AMCN website for the event:  

http://islandclassic.com.au/

If interested in camping, you will need to complete the form:

http://islandclassic.com.au/file_admin/2012%20IC%20GA%20&%20Campground%20Ticket%20Booking%20Form.pdf

and scan/send it back to the email link:

info@phillipislandcircuit.com.au

Another Motorcycle News info link is:

http://www.mcnews.com.au/NewsArchives/2011/December/Classic_Entry.htm

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

NOW YOU SEE YOUR RIGHTS, NOW YOU DON'T.

 
Claude Guéant, French Interior Minister, has just announced one of the most ridiculous and absurd pieces of legislation that will force all bikers in France from 1st January 2013 to wear at least 125 cm2 of reflective clothing between the waist and the shoulders.
 
Not only bikers who reside in France will be obliged to comply with this policy but also all those who visit France by motorbike/scooter. If you are caught not wearing the required reflective clothing, you will be liable for a fine of 68 euros payable on the spot and at least two points taken off your licence.
 
This is one of the most laughable and absurd pieces of legislation we have ever heard of because a) reflective clothing is precisely not reflective during day light and b) those who ride machines of up to 125cc will be exempt from wearing any reflective clothing on the grounds that they don't ride a powerful enough bike to be considered dangerous on the roads!
 
Let's not forget that a very large number of motorcyclists who ride a moped or a 125cc bike are precisely those who don't hold a full motorcycle licence and have only attended at the very most a one-off 7 hour training course all together. But for the short-minded French transport authorities, bikers who ride larger machines are the ones who cause most concern on the roads because they have been much better trained than every other biker!
 
Despite three enormous demonstrations during 2011 attended by more than 100,000 bikers and that brought the whole of France to a complete stop, the French government still doesn't get it. Or, to be more accurate, the French government seems to be willing to see the whole country brought to a complete standstill again by angry bikers in no later than this coming spring and during the presidential elections campaign.
 
The very famous and respected French motorcycle pressure group FFMC (Fédération Française des Motards en Colère) has already warned the government of their plans to organise extremely disruptive demonstrations across the whole nation. FFMC's Frederic Jeorge said "It will be considered almost as bad as driving without a helmet, even if you are wearing full leather armour, on a bike with the headlights on and knowing that our helmets already have 4 mandatory reflective stickers... Also, it will NOT include the mopeds and 125cc, where's the logic?"
 
Whilst it makes perfect sense to educate bikers to be more visible on the roads to minimise the risk of collisions resulting from car drivers not seeing them, it also makes sense to educate car drivers to share the roads with bikers and make them realise that they don't own the roads. Why are car drivers not forced to apply a yellow sticker at the back (and front) of their vehicle to make it more visible? Why are riders and drivers not treated equally on the roads and, more importantly, why are bikers being constantly treated as irresponsible and rogue citizens?
 
If a series of enormous demonstrations had not taken place throughout France in 2011 against this policy, it would not only be 125 cm2 of reflective clothing that would be required on all bikers but their entire chest, arms and back would have been to be covered!
 
Sadly, we all very well know that the whole point of this policy is for the government to catch as many bikers as possible who don't comply and take 68 euros of their hard earned money. Rather than investing in adequate training for both riders and drivers, the government prefers to impose stupid rules and make money out of them.
 
Oh well, all we can say is that we look forward to seeing France brought to a complete standstill right in the middle of the presidential elections campaign by more than 100,000 angry bikers blocking the roads in every town and city nationwide. In fact, we can't wait... bring it on and let's all have a laugh!
 
ANY_CHARACTER_HERE
 
If you're based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government's proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC - French Federation of Angry Bikers).
 
ANY_CHARACTER_HERE
 
Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Monday, 9 January 2012

CLASSIC ROCK & BLUES

BLUE DOG CRUISER will perform from 9pm till late on Janury 20, 2012. They play classic rock & blues. The venue is Brycees Tavern in Mooroolbark east of Melbourne.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

VICROADS/MUARC RESEARCH PROJECT - JAN 2012

TO INTERESTED PARTIES

I'd  be interested to hear what happens at the meeting this afternoon.
I  suspect  VicRoads/MUARC  will  tell  the selected few what they are
going to do and call it consultation.

I  doubt  there  will  be  any real stakeholder input. A question that
should be asked is why the restricted invitation list? The excuse that
public knowledge of this research may alter rider behaviour and effect
the outcome they want is not credible. The public already knows.

Questions   on  what  motorcycling  experience  those  designing  this
research have will probably be avoided or met with the excuse that the
research project is designed by qualified people who only want what is
best  for  riders  so they do not need to actually be motorcyclists or
even  know  motorcyclists.  Riders  should  be grateful they are being
saved from themselves.

Any  doubts  about  the  size of the samples or methodology or similar
studies  on  other  transport  modes  will  likely be danced around or
promises given to get that info to the questioner later.

The  promised  special-duplicate-of-this-meeting  meeting  for the IRG
hasn't  happenend  yet but I made sure each of the members of the Road
Safety  Committee  got the details on today's VicRoads/MUARC pantomime
and the fact that VicRoads Director Holgate told me I was NOT invited.
Professor  Marcus  Wigan  and  highly  qualified  Michael Czajka, both
riders, were not invited either.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne
Tel: 03 9846 8621
d.codognotto.oam@bigpond.com

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN

If  you  ride a motorcycle or scooter on Victorian roads and/or earn a
living from motorcycling, this directly effects you.

The  Independent  Riders'  Group  was  specifically  excluded from the
VicRoads/MUARC  information  session  set  for  January  9,  2012. The
session  was to inform selected people about a research project and to
discuss  ways  of communicating with motorcycle & scooter riders about
the project.

I  received  an  email  making  it  clear  that  I  was NOT invited. I
forwarded it to the Victorian Road Safety Committee as another example
of  VicRoads/TAC/Police  selecting  people  who  fit  their agendas to
represent riders rather than riders choosing their own representatives
as other groups do.

There  are 300,000 plus riders in this state. How many of them elected
the  people  who are invited to attend this "information session"? How
many  of them even know the session is on?

75%  of the bike media don't bother to keep the riding public informed
about  this  sort  of  thing. Bike mags generally don't have political
columns  any more. This research directly effects their readers and is
part-funded by the TAC antibike tax rip off. Considering their readers
and  advertisers  are  directly  effected  and  the way journos earn a
living, this neglect seems counterproductive.

Director  of  Road  Safety  Holgate  (VicRoads)  said he will set up a
special   meeting   for   the   Independent  Riders'  Group  after the
January 9 meeting for selectees. Why the segregation?

It  will  be  very  interesting  to see if any of the selectees puts a
complaint   on  the  record  about  the  way  this  research  and  the
information  session  were set up. Minimal consultation, short notice,
holding  the  meeting  in a pub during the holidays, hardly the way to
get stakeholder input.

I  urge  you  to  make  your  views known to the Victorian Road Safety
Committee  as  part  of  the  Parliamentary  Inquiry into Motorcycle &
Scooter Safety.

The members of the Victorian Road Safety Committee are:

Murray Thompson MP
Liberal
Sandringham
Tel: 03 9598 2688
murray.thompson@parliament.vic.gov.au

Bill Tilley MP
Liberal
Benambra (Wodonga)
Tel: 02 6024 4488
bill.tilley@parliament.vic.gov.au

Telmo Languiller MP
Labor
Derrimut (Sunshine West)
Tel: 03 9311 7886
telmo.languiller@parliament.vic.gov.au

Andrew Elsbury MP
Liberal
Western Metro (Keilor)
Tel: 03 9331 7644
andrew.elsbury@parliament.vic.gov.au

Jude Perera MP
Labor
Cranbourne
Tel: 03 5996 2901
jude.perera@parliament.vic.gov.au

It's  up  to  riders and those who make a living out of riders to stop
the  over-regulation and lost safety opportunities affecting our right
to  ride  and our lifestyle.

Make an appointment to see one of the MPs
on the Victorian Road Safety Committee now.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Spokesman
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne
Tel: 03 9846 8621

Thursday, January 5, 2012, 5:20:13 AM, you wrote:

Hey ho.

The usual exclusion policy from MUARC and VicRoads.

No I didn't get an invitation either.

Name supplied.

Date: Tue, 3 Jan 2012 20:31:19 +1100
From: d.codognotto.oam@bigpond.com
To: James.Holgate@roads.vic.gov.au
Subject: Re: INFORMATION SESSION - JANUARY 9, 2012.

Thanks James,

You  did  NOT  mention  that  the MUARC motorcycle & scooter study was
"invitation  only".  There is no mention of invitations in your letter
to  Tony  Ellis  or  mention  of any form of confidentiality. There is
mention  of communications with riders though. I left the phone with a
positive  feeling  about  the meeting and stakeholder involvement in a
tax payer funded project that directly effects our lives.

It  turned  out to be a similar response to our request to be involved
in  the  meeting  prior  to the launch of the bus lanes trial. The bus
lanes  trial  has  serious safety problems. Input from various experts
was  rejected  by  VicRoads.  The Independent Riders' Group was banned
from that meeting too.

Be  that as it may, at your suggestion, I have spoken to your PA about
a seperate meeting for the Independent Riders' Group with VicRoads and
MUARC and we will be available. It seems like duplication to us.

Since  the information about the meeting and study is public, concerns
of some that the outcomes of the project not be biased by factors that
might influence participants' behaviours such as their prior knowledge
of  the trial, seem illogical, but, the IRG isn't allowed to attend so
we won't be shown where our logic is flawed.

We wait for details of our meeting.

Thank you.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Spokesman
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne
Tel: 03 9846 8621

Tuesday, January 3, 2012, 3:37:32 PM, you wrote:

Damien,

Thanks  for  the  call  yesterday.  As I thought I indicated then, the
meeting  next  week is by invitation only. The reason for this is that
it has been specifically designed to help Monash University to develop
communication  strategies  that  ensure that participants in the study
understand  the reason and process for their participation. Obviously,
one of the concerns of researchers is that the outcomes of the project
not   be   biased   by  factors  that  might  influence  participants'
behaviours,  such  as  their  prior  knowledge  of  the trial. So this
session   is   not  intended  to  be  a  broad  communication  to  the
motorcycling public generally.

As such, I believe that more value can be achieved for you by having a
separate  briefing  that  will  allow us to discuss a broader range of
issues, should you wish to do so.

If  you  would like to do this, please contact my PA, who will be able
to set up a meeting here.

I  have  taken  the  liberty of copying my reply to Monash University.
They  are leading the project and I should emphasise that this project
is  Monash's, with VicRoads being one of a number of partners. In this
instance,  we  are running this session as part of our contribution to
the project.
regards

James Holgate
Acting Executive Director, Road Safety & Network Access
VicRoads

From:   Damien   Cognotto   OAM   <d.codognotto.oam@bigpond.com>
Date:  03/01/2012  03:18  PM  Subject:
INFORMATION SESSION - JANUARY 9, 2012.
Mr James Holgate
Director
Road User Safety
VicRoads
60 Denmark Street,
Kew,  Vic.   3101.

Dear Sir,

Thank  you  for  talking  to  me yesterday about the Monash University
Accident  Research  Centre  study  to  better  understand  the factors
contributing to motorcycle crashes.

You  are  right, this research is of great interest to the majority of
motorcycle & scooter riders.

The  Independent  Riders Group has three members wanting to attend the
information session in January 9, 2012.

Can you please send us details of the time and venue and an agenda. In
order  to  make  a better contribution we would appreciate information
onthe  study itself, terms of reference, sample sizes, methodology and
so on.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Spokesman
Independent Riders'Group
Melbourne
Tel: 03 9846 8621

http://www.damiencodognottooam.blogspot.com/
  

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Welcome to 2012.

It looks like it could be a good year for Australia's motorcycle & scooter riders. Then again .....

The Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into motorcycle & scooter safety finished its' public hearings in December and will table its' report in State Parliament in June so there's still time to contact the MP on the inquiry committee and let them know how you feel about matters motorcycling. Their contact information is in a following post on a 2012 research project.

A few years ago VicRoads changed the regs on placement of registration labels on bikes. This was done with minimal consultation and no publicity. Nothing new there. But, VicRoads didn't tell anyone about the change so the Government, then Opposition, published a policy to changed the reg that had already changed. Police weren't told apparently so, preumably, they kept booking riders for failing to display rego labels correctly under the old rules. If anyone has been booked, you may be entitled to a refund. More on that in a future post.

Also in 2011 VicRoads began a bus lane trial where motorcycles & scooters are allowed to use the bus lane inbound on Hoddle Street between the Eastern Freeway and Victoria Parade. You are NOT permitted to use the bus lane on the Eastern Freeway, nor are you allowed to follow the bus into Victoria Parade. You have to turn left, away from the city into crowded Victoria Street. This defeats the purpose of the trial and, if you ask me, is very dangerous. More on that in a future post.

VicRoads & MUARC will run a research project on two groups of riders in 2012. An information session is/was held on January 9 in a pub function room. One might ask why not a meeting room at VicRoads or the Melbourne Town Hall or the VACC? One might also ask why a Monday afternoon in January when too many people are on holidays? And, one might ask why key stakeholders were NOT invited? More on this too in another post.

Anyway, get out there and enjoy your bikes before the powers that be regulate and tax you off our roads.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne
Tel: 03 9846 8621