Monday, 29 February 2016


The Melbourne Age ran a story on the spike in road fatalities today, March 1, 2016. Soon after 4 pm, Radio 3AW interviewed a VMC representative on the spike and the Monash University academic who wants to BAN motorcycles. 

ABC Radio 774 reported in the 5 pm news that two motorcyclists had been seriously injured in separate crashes this afternoon. It sounds like these were not single vehicle crashes. Both riders were taken to the Alfred Hospital.


Friday, 19 February 2016


For immediate release.


Friday,  February  19,  2016.


Motorcyclists will park to rule in St Kilda this weekend to protest
against the City of Port Phillip’s surprise parking bans (6 month trial)
requested by St Kilda police. There was no consultation with
stakeholders. There was no warning. Requests for meetings to solve a
parking problem in front of LUNA PARK were ignored.

Darren Carson, a motorcycle rider who spends his money in Acland Street
was angered by the motorbike bans. He called on riders to protest
against this unfair treatment by the CoPP and  Police. Many bike
organisations, including the Independent Riders’ Group, support Darren.

Port Phillip Mayor Bernadene Voss said the trial had been requested by
Victoria Police as both they and the council “had been receiving
complaints about the large number of motorcycles being parked on what is
the busiest pedestrian thoroughfare in St Kilda”. The CoPP provided no
details of complaints: verbal? written? how many? over what period? Where?

The CoPP provided no alternative to the lost parking space for riders
who visit or come to work in St Kilda.

A notice online said. "Sunday's protest ride has been cancelled ...
information has come to hand that the council had arranged for Police
and EPA to be present and to target all bikes. ...... Basically the
council (The City of Port Phillip) has set a trap ..... "

The notice was anonymous, a scare tactic by someone trying to undermine
a legitimate protest. If bikes are registered and roadworthy they are
legal to be in St Kilda and to park according to the signs.

Spokesman for the Independent Riders’ Group, Damien Codognotto said.
“Someone has their dirty tricks department working overtime to scare
riders away but I can’t see police  targeting a legal, peaceful protest.

That wouldn't be in the spirit of our democracy, would it? And, it
certainly would not do tourism in the area any good during the year.
After the bikes do they turn on the modified cars?”

Riders in regional Victoria are concerned that local officials may make popular stopping places for touring riders no go areas if the St Kilda police request sets a precedent.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group (IRG)

Sunday, 14 February 2016



Dear Ms Blair.

Our responses are in your text.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders Group

On 15/02/2016 2:37 PM, Fiona Blair wrote:

Dear Damien

Thank you for your enquiry. Councillor Thomann has read your email and
requested I respond on behalf of council.

The City of Port Phillip and Victoria Police have received many
complaints in recent times regarding the large number of motorcycles
regularly parking on footways in the vicinity of O’Donnell Gardens,
specifically the entrance to Luna Park and the footpath area adjacent to
The Vineyard.

DC - We know of the complaint about motorcycles & scooters parking on
the LUNA PARK forecourt. We have spoken with LUNA PARK's Manager
Matthew Butta and asked the City of Port Phillip for a meeting so
stakeholders and council can find a real solution to this problem. No
response from CoPP on this.

We have been given no information on the "many complaints in recent
times regarding the large number of motorcycles regularly parking on
footways". Please inform us the number of complaints you define as
"many". Were they written or verbal? What were the actual complaints?
There is no privacy issue here because we do not want personal details
of the complainants, just the facts of the complaints. How many? What
date and time. What location? When dealing with these issues the City
of Melbourne Motorcycles Committee asks all these questions and
consults with stakeholders so we are not asking anything unreasonable
of the City of Port Phillip.

In addition to these complaints, Council has also been contacted with
concerns relating to excessive noise from motorcycles disturbing the general
amenity of the area. These complaints have been referred to Victoria Police and
the EPA.

DC - We do not see how noise complaints effect parking unless
CoPP/police use lack of parking to make it more difficult for all
riders to visit St Kilda. Excessive noise can and should be controlled
by police and the EPA, that's their job.

So the record is straight, audible conspicuity is a fact. Some engine
sound from a motorbike or scooter in traffic makes car drivers aware
of the presence of a rider nearby. That's primary safety. Having said
that, extremely loud exhaust pipes and engines revved by show offs
gives all riders a bad name just as soccer hooligans are bad for that
sport. The appropriate authorities have the tools to deal with
excessive noise. In St Kilda it seems, they don't.

The current motorcycle parking restrictions were implemented recently .....

DC - Without consultation with stakeholders, not the riders nor the
businesses. Given the amount of contact the IRG has had with CoPP in
the last 3 years it almost seems this move was kept quiet.

to ensure our footpaths remain accessible for pedestrians and not impeded
by motorcyclists riding and parking on designated pedestrian zones.

DC - What designated pedestrian zones? My advice is that state law
says in effect that riders may park their bikes on footpaths provided
they do not block car doors from opening, impede pedestrian traffic or
hinder access to a business. It is common sense and it has worked for
the good of all for 30 years (1986/87) in Victoria. Motorcycle &
scooter riders are not allowed to ride on footpaths. If that is a
problem, which we doubt, then again lack of enforcement of existing
laws is to blame and this can be remedied.

Council has a responsibility to ensure this highly concentrated pedestrian
area is a safe place for all.

DC - Council has a responsibility to ensure this highly concentrated
pedestrian area is a safe place for all, including visiting motorcycle
& scooter riders, bicyclists (who also park on footpaths in the area)
and business operators and their staff.

The No Standing signage has been introduced on a trial basis and will be
conducted for a period of 6 months. The effectiveness of the signage
will be evaluated at the end of this term.

DC - First we were told the signs were temporary while the St Kilda
Festival was on. That was not correct. Then we were told they were
permanent. That was not correct. Now we are told the ban is for a six
month trial begun with no consultation or prior notice. How will the
effectiveness of the signage be evaluated? Bikes are banned for 6
months so no one parks there then CoPP/police say well the signs
worked so they stay. That is not a trial. Who will evaluate this so
called trial?

Council believes this recent No Standing control relates to a very small
and concentrated area.

DC - Once a council flouts the intent of the Victorian motorcycle &
scooter footpath parking law, with no consultation or input from
stakeholders, it will spread.

I trust this clarifies Council’s position and we look forward to your
support in maintaining St Kilda as a safe place for all.

DC - Your email makes the council's position very clear indeed.


City of Port Phillip




Please share/twitter/email this post to as many riders as you can and encourage them to attend this protest if they can.

Here's what the Independent Riders Group has managed to find out so far. None of this is in writing so there could be changes but here's what we think we know.

The signs banning bike footpath parking in the City of Port Phillip went up mid February. The signs cover the whole block around LUNA PARK in St Kilda bounded by Shakespeare Grove, Acland Street, Cavell Street and Jacka Boulevarde.

The signs were put up after a request from St Kilda Police to the CoPP. There was no problem with motorcycle & scooter footpath parking except for the forecourt in front of LUNA PARK and the corner near the Vineyard Restaurant which gets a bit untidy. There was no consultation with stakeholders in spite of requests for a CoPP/Police/stakeholders meeting on bike parking.

Local businesses, including LUNA PARK, were as surprised as the Independent Riders Group when the signs appeared.

First we were told the signs were only up for the St Kilda Festival. Not true.

Then we were told the signs were permanent. Not yet true.

Today (15/2/2016) we were told the signs were part of a trial asked for by St Kilda Police in response, they say, to bike parking problems in the area.

No car bays have been converted to free bike parking to replace the bike parking space lost by the ban around LUNA PARK.

If this trial ban of a whole block is deemed a success, the signs here will become permanent.

If the St Kilda area bike parking ban becomes permanent we can expect other councils in Victoria to introduce area bans with little or no consultation with stakeholders. This could spread like a bushfire.

Darren called for a protest rally in St Kilda this Sunday, February 21, 2016 from 10 am to 3 pm. I'll be there. The corner of Acland Street and Shakespeare Grove. Even stopping by for 10 minutes will help. Please let us know if you can be there.


Friday, 12 February 2016


Cr Bernadene Voss
The Mayor.
The City of Port Phillip

Dear Cr Voss.

Please let us know what is happening with motorcycle & scooter footpath parking around LUNA PARK in St Kilda?

First we were told the bike ban signs were temporary. Now they are permanent. Taking up car bays in the Shakespear Grove or other car park is counterproductive. Fewer carspaces menas fewer car loads of customers. NO problem has been demonstrated with motorcycle & scooter footpath parking in the area of LUNA PARK except on the forecourt which is one of the reasons we asked for the meeting with CoPP and stakeholders.

Motorcycle & scooter riders are good customers. They pay. They are well behaved. RTheir vehicles take up less space and are always at least at 50% of carrying capacity.

Requests for a meeting to work on better motorcycle & scooter parking arrangements around LUNA PARK seem to have been mislaid by the City of Port Phillip.
From the facebook page.

Tony Harley Where did you get your info from?

Not temporary.... a friend of mine posted this on another page....

" I Have just been on the phone with The council. And they tell me It is to be permanent No Motor Cycle Parking on the footpath. But they say they have now allocated More Motor Cycle parking in the car park behind the Vineyard Restaurant. So in short no Bikes on the foot path!!:( I just think its a worry as if one council goes this way,t how many others will follow!?"

Unlike · Reply · 1 · 15 hrs
Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group (IRG)
PO Box 4330
Doncaster Heights Vic 3109

Thursday, 11 February 2016



More info soon.


IN THIS WHOLE ARTICLE the primary cause of motorcycle & scooter road trauma does not rate a mention. Motorcycle & scooter riders are told they are responsible for their own safety. Car driver error does not get a mention. Car driver error is by far the biggest cause of vulnerable road user casualties. Even the motorcycle rep's criticism of negligent and/or incompetent car drivers got edited.

If it had been nine bicyclists that got killed, the reporting would have been different, the police would be telling car drivers they had to share the road, VicRoads would gush "TRAVEL HAPPY" and the RACV might even give the journo a quote about driver awareness.

Another point is that this journo ( did NOT make the point that about two thirds of these fatals involved unriders! Road riders are very safe statistically IF you remove the unrider and off-road numbers that get included in our stats.                                                                             

Wednesday, 10 February 2016


On ABC radio in Melbourne a police officer was quoted saying he thought the car driver DID NOT SEE THE BIKE!


Tuesday, 9 February 2016


The helmet camera case against Max Lichtenbaum (Case ID: AP-15-2530) will be heard in the County Court in Melbourne on Thursday, February 11, 2016. 


Victoria Police mostly ignored helmet cameras but, in 2014, motorcycle rider, Max Lichtenbaum, was booked. The Independent Riders' Group was told he was pulled up by a police rider involved in filming the reality show "Highway Patrol".

Max was on his way to volunteer as a motorcycle marshal at a sporting event. He had done nothing wrong, his licence was in order, his bike was too. The charge was written in the officer's hand writing. It read.
"Fail to wear an approved helmet."

But the rider was obviously wearing an approved helmet. It had an ADR 1698 sticker on it and it was in good condition. Max rider was fined $289 and 3 demerit points.

The camera was small and light similar to those used by West Australian police. It was attached to the helmet with adhesive tape. To be most effective on a bicycle, motorcycle or scooter, the camera needs to be
helmet mounted so it records what the rider sees.

Max wasn't charged with any other offence. He was pulled up apparently because he was there and so was the TV crew. He rider fought the fine because it was unfair and probably unlawful.

The case reportedly went to court six times. Before the last appearance in September 2015, police offered to withdraw the charge. Why? The Judge reduced the fine to $150. Why?

This unusual case gets curiouser and curiouser it seems. VicRoads refused to supply defence lawyers with a copy of ADR 1698 on the grounds that, while it was available from their library in Kew, that their library was not open to the public.

Channel 7 refused to supply/sell a copy of the footage of Max being booked.

          I am the producer of Highway Patrol. The incident you mentioned was shot by this programme, not Motorway Patrol.

We don’t release footage to members of the public, nor do we discuss individual cases with members of the public.

Sorry I can’t be of any assistance.


Mary" Durham
Highway Patrol <javascript:return>

This case could effect every Victorian because it may make a motorcycle, scooter and possibly a bicycle safety device illegal and because it means Victoria Police won't be allowed to use a very effective traffic law enforcement tool that is used safely interstate and overseas.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders Group



Temporary Australians Series 4 now available for download

You can rent or buy an episode or the whole series on Vimeo.

Kind regards,


Wednesday, 3 February 2016


The INDEPENDENT RIDERS' GROUP will lobby for new stop lines at appropriate intersections in 2016 in Victoria. Stop lines for ALL bikes will compliment the 2015 traffic filtering laws
for motorcycles & scooters and will help keep motorcycle & scooter riders out of bicycle lanes. The new stop lines will improve safety and traffic flow.



Motorcycle & scooter riders excluded from research again. Why do riders pay all the usual taxes plus extra road taxes if not for safety research? How are they going to prove how dangerous we are (or are not), if they don't do the science?


The IRG has applied to the City of Port Phillip for a permit to hold the 2016 TOY RUN for FATHR BOB on Sunday, December 11 (alternate Dec. 4) in the O'Donnell Gardens next to LUNA PARK in St Kilda. This will be the 4th St Kilda TOY RUN SINCE 2013. 

Melbourne TOY RUNs began in 1978. Today more than 50 TOY RUNs are held across Australia each December. 

The 2015 St Kilda TOY RUN for FATHER BOB was a great success. Please take a few minutes to look at these video links. The Sunrise program is national and it covered both the Melbourne and Adelaide TOY RUNs. The Newcastle and Hobart TOY RUNs attracted record numbers. The videos clearly show pedestrians cheering the riders, bicyclists waving in support and the slow moving motorcycle & scooter riders enjoying the event and providing a great spectacle safely.

Planning is well under way for TOY RUNs in December 2016.