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Police ok drive to buy commuter bike

Police ok drive to buy motorcycle
Police allowed Elliot Redward to travel 400km to pick up his bike

A Coffs Harbour rider has received NSW Police approval to drive 390km to buy a second-hand commuter bike to ride to work.

Elliot Redward currently has a Suzuki GSX650F (pictured) and graduates to his full licence this week so he wanted to buy a Kawasaki ZX-14R for his daily 27km each-way commute.

“I found a bargain of a bike south towards Sydney,” he says.

“I do love the bigger sports bike and this day and age they are cheap.

“The problem is I live almost 400km away.”

Commuter bike

So Elliot did the responsible thing and contacted the NSW Police Commissioner’s office to find out if it was legal to drive that far to buy his desired commuter bike.

However, the brief reply simply referred him to the NSW Health website which says it is legal to travel for work reasons.

Like many of these hastily drafted rules it is unclear and Elliot still wasn’t sure if he could drive 390km to buy the commuter bike.

So he contacted Motorbike Writer for advice.

It seemed like a reasonable travel requirement to us — plus he was shopping, which is also exempt!

So we asked NSW Police media for a clearer verdict.

This is the answer we received:

As you can appreciate there are many different scenarios in relation to COVID-19 restrictions. While we can not answer them all I would suggest in this case to travel to a destination to obtain a motor vehicle for the purpose of travelling to work would be a reasonable cause to travel. If he was pulled over it would be a matter of explaining to the officer the reason for your journey.nsw cops police Horror bike crashes in two states lying seeking dubbo overnight bail negligent SUV young national park fatal knocking unlicensed


Elliot picked up his bike today (17 April 2020).

It’s a 2016 zX14r with tail tidy, seat cowl, 4m exhaust, double bubble screen, bar raisers and heated grips for $13000.

“I’m riding it like granny,” he says.

Ended up getting the new daily 2016 zX14r Tail tidy Seat cowl 4m Exhurst Double bubble Bar raisers Heated grips 5600ks $13000


This is a win for Elliot and a win for commonsense.

We don’t pass any judgement on Elliot’s choice for a commuter bike. It’s a free country!

And we also don’t expect everyone will now suddenly hop in their cars to drive hundreds of kilometres to buy a motorcycle for work, just to avoid the travel restrictions.

However, some people have done some dumb things during the current lockdown!

And we have also seen some rather strange fines being imposed by police in Queensland, NSW and Victoria for people.

But this decision is a reasonable and responsible response from NSW Police.

So let’s also act in a reasonable and responsible way.

If you do plan to leave home on your motorcycle, make sure you have a valid reason.

If police pull you over, explain your reason politely and mention that you firmly believe it is valid.

They may still direct you to turn around and go home, which you should do or you are disobeying a police directive and could cop an even bigger fine.

If you do cop an on-the-spot fine for non-compliant travel, you are legally allowed to challenge it, but you should seek legal help.

Since courts are only hearing serious matters during the pandemic, it could be some time before minor matters such as this are brought before the courts.

To avoid an overload of the courts, the police may even waive some of these fines once the travel restrictions are removed.

It’s your decision. Act responsibly.

    1. Caught my eye as well. Hoping he has ridden previously and knows what he is taking on. One problem with inexperienced riders on high-powered machinery is the possibility that any accident will divert police resources and, more importantly, health workers from the task of dealing with coronavirus care. Ride safe.

      1. Indeed, that made me a bit nervous too. He’s going from Entry-level to deep in to Advanced-level bikes. Little nervous about that.

  1. I find it interesting that a reference is made to riding a motorcycle when you leave home and not a car as if there is something different?
    It feels like there is that discrimination creeping in suggesting all motorcyclists are different in some way … as distinct from using less petrol, more environmental, taking up less of the road and create less wear and tear on the roads that cars.
    May I remind all that if everyone ride a motorcycle when appropriate as in less than two people going on a trip we would have no road congestion, no toll roads and dramatically reduce travel times while creating less pollution and effectively negate the current need for electric cars.

    1. Driving a car also requires a valid reason.
      They are both valid means of transportation, and in this case he wad driving a car or whatever to pick up his new “commuter” bike.

  2. I was having a take away coffee on a public seat outside a cafe during my morning ‘ exercise walk ‘ and a couple of people pulled up on motorcycles , one guy told me he lived in a certain village and had travelled 25 klm to get a haircut in a nearby City and was now taking a 70 klm circular ride home , I said to him that’s hardly a short ‘ exercise ride ‘ , better watch out the Cops don’t pull you over , he said he was a Cop and had a couple of RDO’s prior to the Easter weekend and its was ‘ perfectly legal ‘.

  3. I don’t own a car. My wife owns a car. My wife does most of the shopping, I do however buy fruit & veg, milk and some other when needed.
    Any day when it is not raining and I need to leave home to go to any medical or other appointment, visit mates, buy anything (including a carton of Beer) I use my bike, the car is not an option.

    Some years ago I was involved in a major MVA (with a RED P Plate driver {who was at fault}) and part of my recovery was a “Mental Health Day” that my GP and I agreed on. I’m still not back to my pre-injury condition physically & rehab is ongoing as is my “Mental Health Day”.
    My “Mental Health Day” is meeting with some mates (some days 1 or 2 others some days 10 or 12 mates) once a week and going for a ride.
    Some days I might feel the need to go for a ride to clear my head & I might do 250 or 300Ks. When I’m out there I clear my head and when I get home I can continue with the physical rehab.

  4. OK, I’ll bite… It seems as though there wasn’t much if anything wrong with the GSX mechanically. Bloke couldn’t wait to upgrade, maybe not an essential purchase at this point, but everyone loves a bargain. Hope he knows what he’s getting into (on to).

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