FIM Position: MOTORCYCLE SAFE INFRASTRUCTURE
Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme
Road infrastructure is developed with cars in mind. The design of roads, and the tests of roadside barriers, poles, road surfaces, everything that is part of, or next to a road is done from the perspective of car drivers. Motorcycles are by their nature different from cars and trucks and have different demands. Motorcycles are one-track vehicles and as such are more sensitive than cars to cracks, potholes, slippery and polluted road surfaces and poorly applied markings on the road. Motorcyclists have no protective cage like car drivers, so roadside barriers, curbs and poles that may be beneficial, or just not dangerous to other road users, are often a hazard for motorcyclists. For further detail, see Roadside and Median Crash Barriers position paper.
Why better infrastructure:
- Bad infrastructure is one of the most important causes of accidents in which motorcycles are involved. Only 29% of the roads in Europe have a 3-star rating - on a scale of 1 to 5 stars of the EuroRAP system - for motorcyclists. For car drivers this is 44%. This should at least be 75% 3-star rating or better.
- Bad infrastructure is one of the main causes of severe injuries and deaths of motorcyclists.
- Additional costs to improve road infrastructure standards to meet the, so far neglected, needs of vulnerable road users, including motorcyclists, is by far outweighed by the benefit of saving lives on European roads.
How infrastructure should be improved
- New standards should be adopted for roadside- and median barriers to make them less dangerous to motorcyclists.
- All unnecessary objects along the road must be removed where possible, to create an obstacle free roadside and to provide free sight for all road users.
- The surface of the road should be free of unnecessary markings. Where markings are unavoidable they should be made of a material with the same skid resistance as the pavement, and the thickness of the material should be limited. This skid resistance should be maintained for as long as the marking exists.
- The road should be free of all raised lane separations that cannot be driven/ridden over, especially on roundabouts.
- The current Directive 2008/96/EC should be applicable to other roads as well, preferably also to the secondary road network.
- Road layout, and the development, installation and maintenance of road infrastructure and road furniture should be designed with motorcycles in mind.
- The road should be free of debris, including grit.