RSA on Type Approval & High-Viz

The RSA has published a page on it’s web site [click here] about both the EU type approval proposals and it’s own proposal to make high visibility clothing mandatory for riders & pillion passengers.

Type Approval

With regard to the EU type approval proposals the RSA page sets out the objectives of the proposals as stated by the EU themselves, and then links to the RSA’s own information note which you can read here;

It’s a very brief summary of the proposals, and touches on the mandatory ABS, anti-tampering, always on headlights, etc. It tells us nothing we didn’t already know.

Mandatory High Visibility clothing

The RSA again fails to provide any evidence that suggests high visibility clothing will have any significant impact on casualties. Instead it says that;

While other drivers need to pay far greater attention to the presence of motorcyclists on the road, motorcyclists should do all they can to increase their visibility on the roads. This can be done by using daytime running lights and wearing reflective or high visibility material.

This assumes that a driver who can’t see a 55 watt headlight (because they didn’t bother to look properly) will somehow see a fluorescent vest behind the light. Our own web site poll tells us that 91% of you are against compulsion. Just 8% are in favour, and 1% are undecided. So the RSA continues to push the red herring of high visibility clothing when 9 out of 10 riders want to have the choice – as we currently do – to wear high-viz or not as appropriate to our needs & circumstances.

The RSA then goes on to confirm what we already know;

As part of its Motorcycle Safety Strategy 2010 to 2014(PDF) the RSA intends to seek the introduction of mandatory wearing of hi-vis material by all motorcyclists, in 2014. This will be subject to consultation with motorcyclists and industry on the most appropriate type of hi-vis material and possible solutions.

So the decision has been made. The only item up for discussion is they type of high-viz material. We say that’s not good enough. MAG Ireland has written to the RSA some time ago asking for the evidence on which this proposal has been based. To date we have received no reply. Probably because, so far as we are aware, there is no evidence to show that high viz has any meaningful prospect of preventing that car from pulling out our U-turning across your path.

MAG Ireland’s position is simple. We are not against high visibility clothing, we simply say it’s up to the rider to choose what to wear. In other words, “Let the Rider Decide”.

That is not something the RSA appear to have any intention of doing despite thousands of you demonstrating this past weekend. Why not write to the RSA and tell them what you think as a rider?

Road Safety Authority
Moy Valley Business Park
Primrose Hill
Co. Mayo