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Should motorcycle rider courses be subsidised?

Senator Ricky Muir
Senator Ricky Muir

With the motorcycle toll reaching new high levels in Victoria and other states, maybe it’s time to consider incentives for riders to do training courses, such as First Aid for Motorcyclists.

Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party Senator Ricky Muir has thrown his support behind the course after attending one in Sale, Victoria.

“There’s always a good case for either the federal or state governments to fund all sorts of prevention programs,” he says.

“Given the huge cost of serious casualty crashes, and the apparent importance of the ‘Golden Hour’ (the care that is provided in the first hour after a serious injury), there could be a case for a subsidy for a course of this type. Where such a subsidy might actually come from is a different question.”

The community-based motorcycle accident management course is being delivered around the country to provide riders with critical knowledge and skills to manage a dangerous accident scene and provide the best chance of a good outcome for casualties.

“In all the discussions around road safety, post-crash care is often overlooked. It’s been estimated by researchers from the Australasian College of Road Safety that as many as 50% of road deaths are actually survivable injuries – if people can get the kind of treatment they need.

“In medical talk, they refer to the ‘Golden Hour’. The First Aid for Motorcyclists course is important in this regard, and I’d encourage all riders to undertake a course like this one.”

Ricky Muir (centre) with First Aid for Motorcyclists course providers Tracy Hughes and Roger Fance
Ricky Muir (centre) with First Aid for Motorcyclists course providers Tracy Hughes and Roger Fance

Ricky says enforcement only occurs after an offence has occurred, when it is too late.

He also says vehicle safety systems can lead to too much reliance and complacency and are only supposed to be a last resort. He believes good road-craft skills training is essential too and lies at the heart of reducing the road toll and serious injury.

“Two aspects of road safety are often overlooked in discussions around the ‘Safe System’ approach – crash prevention and post-crash care,” he says.

The ‘Safe System’ approach seems to focus more on injury minimisation in the event of a crash. For people riding motorcycles, it’s much better to focus on crash prevention and avoiding injury altogether – this is very important for motorcyclists.

“But unexpected things do happen, and having motorcycle-specific first aid training is a big help. I’d really like to see more riders doing a first-aid course like this one.”

Ricky Muir at First Aid for Motorcyclists course
Ricky at the training course

Although better-known as a four-wheel-drive and grassroots motorsport competitor, Ricky is also a keen dirt bike rider and has dabbled in supermotard at a local track in Bairnsdale.

He is also a member Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee, which has been conducting an Inquiry into Aspects of road safety. 

Detailed information on the Inquiry can be found here.

  1. Yes it should.
    And drivers of vehicles with at least four wheels should attend a consequences training course.
    There is now enough video available to show drivers what happens to them and or others when they do something stupid. All new drivers and anyone booked for red light mobile phone or similar offences (but not speeding unless it’s for over twice the limit) and anyone reported for road rage should have to receive the training.

  2. Indeed, but it needs to go far far further than that. Quite frankly the whole driver/rider education system needs to be turned upside down, shaken and have the living shyte kicked out of it. And it requires governments to take the bold step and to have the balls to do it.
    Here in victoria some bright twat came up with the idea of target zero(road deaths)campaign . Yeah right like thats gunna anytime soon. No matter how much I may agree with the entirely unachievable sentiment. But, and I can not for the life of me beleive I’m actually writing this, but until cops are doing a real cops job and not targeting commands flavor of the month, and the government so reliant on speed cameras and the income it produces, realises that everyone excepted for the dumbest of the dumb don’t believe the BS rammed down our throats that speed kills and speed camera save lives.

    Dream on, cause it will never happen. Governments just don’t have the balls.

  3. Speed cameras literally kill! There was a report from Victoria that a couple of street racers were killed when trying to brake heavily to avoid being flashed. This occurred not because it cam as a surprise but because they were using the distance between two cameras as a racetrack start and finish lines and the rules were ,first to the finish without getting zapped.
    One could argue that the racers were stupid, stupid enough that they would have bit the big one without there being any cameras involved, but the thing is the cameras are supposed to discourage that sort of behaviour yet it is clear that not only did they fail in this instance but in every instance. In fact the only impact the use of cameras have on the road toll is to cause it to go up instead of down.
    I have posited this question before but here I go again, does the revenue form speeding fines actually exceed the cost of the accidents they cause?
    Just to clarify one thing the so called speeding that is used to justify the use of cameras is not what you get booked for , the type of speeding that they claim is a major contributor to forty six percent of accidents is more correctly called inappropriately excessive speed, and ninety eight percent of the time this speed is below or equivalent to the posted speed limit.
    But instead of teaching motorists that fact they use an obscure speed kills message and claim speed cameras are for slowing people down to a safe speed to save lives.

  4. While all courses are excellent and benefit riders new and old, there needs to be more content related to attitude, aimed at targeting the potential idiots. Some wisdom and psychology maybe?
    First Aid is great, but it’s after the fact. The focus needs to be on the root cause of accidents.
    Why not subsidise track days? – or “get it out of your system days”.

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