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News & Updates

It’s in RICHMOND TASMANIA.

Call Howard Burrows for details. Mobile: 0439 481 291.

Please forward this message/email to as many motorcyclists as you can.

Damien

MRAA

On Tuesday, February 27, 2024, I represented MRAA members at a meeting of the Parliamentary Friends of Road Safety at Federal Parliament House in Canberra. I wore a suit, not the t-shirt.

Mick (left) and Damien. February 27, 2024.

It was a very impressive assembly. Around 40 people attended. Some had to leave. Others came in. Senators, MHRs, experts and representatives from road safety organisations. I gained a lot of information and made some useful contacts. I would have liked it to go on much longer. I hope to meet Lisa, with members of the MRAA Executive, in Melbourne later in 2024.

Lisa Skaife and her team did a fantastic job getting Members of the Federal Parliament directly involved in road safety.

February 16, 2024.

Hi there,

I’m dropping you another quick note regarding the Data Saves Lives campaign.

There’s promising news in the Australian Financial Review today with reports that the NSW Minns government is putting it’s weight behind road safety data sharing and confirmation that the Albanese government is in negotiations with the states over the issue.

While this is a positive development, until we hear otherwise, we’re not yet celebrating victory.

While this plays out, we are continuing our standard campaign messaging on AAA digital channels.

You can help us maintain the drumbeat calling for accountability in road funding. If you can do so, this is an opportune moment to join the AAA and our member motoring clubs in sharing Data Saves Lives content on AAA’s digital channels.

We’ll be in touch as we learn more,

Blake Reeves

Digital Content Manager

February 15, 2024.

This is very good. Go see your federal MP or Senator. Damien.

**************************************************************

Dear Data Saves Lives campaign partners,

Figures were released yesterday showing 1,257 people died on Australian roads in the past 12 months, a 5.4% increase.

The figures come after crossbenchers last week raised the Data Saves Lives campaign ask with the Albanese Government in negotiations over its proposed industrial relations laws. You can see more in the Australian Financial Review article Sam kindly forwarded yesterday.

This crossbench pressure means data transparency is on the table, making it a critical time to continue to advocate for the Federal Government to require state and territory governments to release data about the causes of crashes, the condition of roads and the effectiveness of police traffic enforcement.

I’ve attached the media release the AAA issued from yesterday afternoon, and social media posts (Facebook, X/Twitter, LinkedIn) concerning the January road trauma figures.

We’d appreciate any help you can give in terms of sharing this social media post so it can be seen by as many people as possible.

Thank you,

Blake

Blake Reeves

Digital Content Manager

AAA

The Hobart Mercury. January 29, 2024.

MEDIA RELEASE

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia calls on the TAC Board to review sponsorships and to allocate the fund road safety projects that will actually reduce road carnage in Victoria.

The MRAA also calls on the Shadow Minister for Road Safety to raise the issue of TAC sponsorships in the next sitting of Parliament.

See attached.

Blame victims to cover incompetence, negligence and misuse of our money where road safety is concerned. 

The truth is VicRoads/TAC wash their hands of too many Victorian country roads abandoning local councils to be responsible for road maintenance and repairs. BUT, local councils mostly do not have the funds to maintain and repair rural roads properly. 

I find it astounding that in 2020/21 TAC gave cash sponsorships to many organisations some with expensive lobbyists, maybe some with “friends-at-court”. Examples; the TAC gave the AFL $500,000, Melbourne Victory (Rugby) got $400,000, Country Racing Victoria got $273,000, the Melbourne Comedy Festival got $150,000 and the Wine Makers of Rutherglen got $52,000. That’s $1,375,000 in sponsorships in just 1 year. It happens every year. How many bad country roads would $1,375,000 repair?

How many AFL and Melbourne Victory fans would this money spent in regional Victoria save from life changing injury or death? 

The TAC justifies this extravagance while their victims die with “… our road safety partners … use digital and social media channels to communicate road safety messages to the community in place of any cancelled events.” WHAT? It is obviously not working! 

Two things springs to mind. 1. The well-paid TAC Board is clearly not qualified to deal with the realities of road safety in 2024. 2. Victorian road users’ premiums are being very, very badly mismanaged. Your have paid for the right to ride or drive to work, take the kids to school or sport, go shopping or out for a meal without suffering serious damage to your machine, life changing injuries or, too often in 2024, death. I don’t care what political flavour you are, potholes do NOT take you out according whether you are leaning left or right.

If you are angry about this waste of your road safety money, email the Shadow Minister for Road Safety.

Shadow Minister O’Brien is paid with your taxes, tell him to earn his keep. Tell him to raise this appalling waste of our money in State Parliament. If you are in his electorate, print this and go see his staff for an appointment. Don’t put it off. Don’t wait for someone else to do it. Just do it. 

54B Cunninghame Street, Sale, Victoria. 3850.  Email: Danny.obrien@parliament.vic.gov.au  Tel: 03 5144 1987.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

Mobile: 0419 846 855.

www.facebook.com/damien.codognotto.9

mraa.net.au

Hi all,

I wanted to get in touch to update you on a groundswell of support for the Data Saves Lives campaign during the holiday break. 

In the past fortnight we’ve seen support from:


Ongoing support from the AAA Data Saves Lives partners:

Our unified efforts continue to raise awareness of the urgent need for public road safety data as a commonsense step to address the trauma we continue to witness – including over the holiday break.

We’ll continue to publish Data Saves Lives content to AAA digital content channels and updatehttp://Datasaveslives.org.au/ . 

Your support sharing and distributing this across your channels is very much appreciated.

Kind regards,

Blake Reeves

Digital Content Manager

‘Morning All.

I know it’s holiday time and I regret having to make this request now. But there was ute/motorcycle crash in the North West. I understand the Advocate in Burnie is looking at this incident.

In Today’s Hobart Mercury there is a Tasmania Police call for witnesses. If you know anything about this crash, or know someone who knows anything, or you have photos or video related to this crash, please call Crash Investigation Services on 131 444.

Road trauma is at record levels across Australia. Pleas take extra care on our roads.

I wish you all the best for 2024.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

mraa.net.au

THE HOBART MERCURY. DECEMBER 29, 2023.

Calls For Tighter E-Scooter Rules

A new study has found millions are being spent by hospitals on people involved in e-scooter crashes, with many not wearing helmets or intoxicated while riding, leading to calls for tighter laws.

https://www.facebook.com/TheProjectTV/videos/1401692870559219

On 24 Nov 2023, at 5:17 pm, Matthew Franklin <Matthew.Franklin@aaa.asn.au> wrote:

Hello to all of our Data Saves Lives partners.

Hope you had a good week.

Thank you once again for the strong support you have provided our campaign in recent weeks.

We have generated a great deal of interest and it is less than a fortnight until state and federal transport ministers meet to discuss the next National Partnership Agreement into road funding. I know my colleague Blake Reeves has been keeping you up to date with regular updates about our progress by sending you sending media clips, social media tiles and other information. Once again, do not hesitate to contact Blake or myself if we can help you with any media or social media activity you care to undertake on our behalf.

Some issues of interest as we end this week:

1. The AAA is conducting further opinion polling about public views about our campaign. We will get results on that over the weekend and act on them next week.

2. There’s been some positive media coverage today. The Daily Telegraph published an excellent article (in print andonline) analysing NSW AusRAP data, which was accessed through an FOI request. The piece includes supportive remarks from Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce, as well as supporting quotes from AAA’s Michael Bradley and NRMA’s Peter Khoury. I’ve attached a PDF of the article for your reference. We’ve amplified this story on AAA’s social media channels, includingFacebook,LinkedIn, andX/Twitter. Feel free to share these posts to spread the word.

3. In paid campaigning, we’ve initiated ‘out of home’ advertising in several key federal electorates starting today. These advertisements (example attached) are appearing in selected locations including Cessnock (NSW), Queanbeyan (ACT), Bridgewater (TAS), Nowra (NSW), Forest Lake (QLD), Campbelltown (NSW). This is a point of escalation to reach politicians who aren’t publicly supportive and apply pressure through on-the ground advocacy.

4. In the government relations space – responses from Labor MPs continue to trickle through – all declining to back our campaign and insisting the government is already acting on data transparency. As you know, we are asking that the commonwealth compel state and territory governments to provide road safety data as a condition of receiving federal road funding. All attempts to extract this information from states voluntarily have proven ineffective. That is why compulsion through the National Partnership Agreement is so critical. Attached is a letter we received today from Labor MP Fiona Phillips. We’ll keep working to convince these Government MPs to back our campaign. As you know, all Coalition, Teals and Greens MPs have indicated they support our proposals.

Finally, with Parliament reconvening next week, Michael Bradley and myself will be busy pressing the campaign, including the new polling outcomes, to MPs and the media.

Have a great weekend. 

Matthew Franklin

Director – External Affairs

Matthew Franklin

AAA Director

External Affairs

Thanks for keeping the MRAA informed Matthew.

Item 4. That any MPs decline to back the AAA road data campaign indicates to us the amount of control transport compulsory third party (CTP) insurance bureaucracies have over our elected representatives. We do not see any action on improving road crash data collection, assessment or transparency. The letter from Fiona Phillips MP, however well-meaning, is an example of talk without effective action.

The Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety (PIMS) in 2012 recommended the a road data authority, independent of the self-titled “road safety partners” be established. Road trauma in Victoria has been increasing steadily since 2012. The concept of a national road data authority should be considered. The current Economy & Infrastructure Committee Inquiry into road user behaviour during and since C19 pandemic will table its’ recommendations in 2024. The MRAA’s made written submissions 45 and 180 and made a verbal submission on August 24, 2023. Submissions and transcripts are available on the Victorian Parliament’s website. One point raised several times was the need to “humanise” bicycle and road-registered motorcycle & scooter riders to reduce casualties in those transport modes.

One way to humanise road motorcycle & scooter riders while serving our community are the annual Christmas TOY RUNs. I will forward information in another email.

If we can support the work of Michael Bradley and yourself next week, please let us know. I will post your information on appropriate Facebook pages, websites and email it to our members and motorcycling organisations across the country.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

Mobile: 0491 846 855.

www.facebook.com/damien.codognotto.9

On 8 Nov 2023, at 5:09 pm, Christopher Swalwell <cswally@hotmail.com> wrote:

G’day Damien,

                        pages 10 and 11, “Truckie crisis to hit grain shipments” by Jason Gregory, apparently there is a shortage of truckies for the second year running to ship winter crops. “Farmers fork out on roads” by David Johnston, apparently croppers are dipping into their own pockets to bring regional roads up to scratch so they can transport their harvest after having problems last year. I wonder who will be liable in the event of these unauthorised repairs causing accidents?

“Major repairs lagging badly” by Peter Hunt, The Victorian government has fallen 25 per cent short of the road repair target according to the Department of Transport and Planning 2022-23 annual report.

Page 21, piece of mind column,  All that money wasted on incomplete rail lines, tunnels, station. We could have fixed every road in Victoria (“Allen government falls 25 per cent short of road repair target”, Nov 2)

I found this article from heraldsun.com.au November 7?:

https://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/sign-that-regional-victorian-road-upgrades-are-under-a-cloud/news-story/b0cbde9f0877e2b6180996f70955540e

Cheers.

Swally.  

MRAA.

THE WYNDHAM CITY COUNCIL

Victoria

October 14, 2023.

Dear Councillors.

On August 17, 2023, the Herald Sun ran the “Rebels without a clue” story. It was about the dangerous unrider problem in your municipality. Inspector Horgan of the Westgate Police said the rogue riders were really dangerous. The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia (MRAA) agreed. Laws must be enforced. Community safety is the priority. But the use of the dog squad and helicopter to hunt these youngsters was overkill.

On August 23 the Wyndham Star. Ran the “Hunt for dirt bike riders” story.

On September 5 the Herald Sun ran “Relative tells of tragic find”. Two teenagers die when their dirt bikes collided on a road near Melton in Victoria.

On September 13 the Wyndham Star ran “Practise not prohibition”.

On September 27 the Wyndham Star ran “Teenage trio arrested over Truganina hoon incident”.

On September 30 the Herald Sun ran “Council forces teenagers off bike tracks, jumps”.

The MRAA wrote to the Council pointing out that a police blitz on unriders on its’ own could only be a temporary fix. To October 14 Wyndham City Council has not replied. One of the things a blitz on youngsters achieves is a disrespect for authorities.

Enforcement must be combined with encouragement as provided by other Councils. Victoria Police have more than enough to do. They are short staffed and under-resourced. Wyndham Council should be getting parents involved. Set up ride days and provide facilities for young riders to enjoy their sport under supervision in a safe environment. Australia produces world motorcycle champions. The Transport Accident Commission (TAC) should be approached for sponsorship. The amounts of money TAC spends on sponsorships, not connected with road safety, is extraordinary. See attached.

In Tasmania the attitude to two-wheel sport is positive. Councils there have a positive attitude to young bicyclists and motorcyclists and they reap benefits of better behaviour, sporting champions and tourist dollars.

On October 10 the Mercury ran “Trails to give a wild ride”.

On October 12 the Mercury ran “Rider wins Aussie title”.

On October 13 the Mercury ran “Riding into the future”.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

I apologise for the delay in coming back to you.

Acknowledging your advocacy for the needs of local riders and support required to ensure their passion for motorsport can be channelled in a safe and constructive way.

In 2018 Council made a $1.6M investment to reinstate the Motocross facility at Lawrie Emmins Reserve, Laverton. The redevelopment of the facility included the provision of beginner and intermediate tracks, a site office, car park and safety upgrades. The facility is open every weekend (weather permitting), as well as additional days on construction industry RDO’s and school holidays. The Operator, CityMX, offer learn to ride and coaching programs for riders of all abilities. CityMX is connected with Victoria Police, who are able to refer residents to the track for no or low-cost access to experience riding at a purpose-built facility.https://www.wyndham.vic.gov.au/venues/lawrie-emmins-motocross-track

I’m sure you’ll agree that this is a significant investment in motocross , particularly when most of the other tracks across Western Melbourne are on private land or funded entirely by not-for-profit clubs.

We’re also watching with interest the proposal from the State Government to establish a ‘Home of Motorsport’ at Avalon, which would provide another location to ride nearby to Wyndham.

Alongside the provision of a safe and constructive place to ride at Lawrie Emmins Reserve, Council supports the activities of Victoria Police to address poor driver/rider behaviour on our roads. From a community safety perspective, it is a concern for many residents and its fair and reasonable for drivers/riders using their vehicles in accordance with the road rules to be and feel safe when using roads across Wyndham.

Thank you for your feedback.

Kind regards,

Cr Susan McIntyre

Mayor

Wyndham City Council

DISABLED RIDERS

On 27 Oct 2023, at 2:11 pm, Julie Hall <jhall@spinal.com.au> wrote:

Hi Damien,

I work for Spinal Life Australia. I got your contact details from the  Motorcycle Riders Association Australia website. I just want to ask if you know of any Custom Motorbikes that have been designed in Australia that allow a person with a spinal cord injury to resume riding. Something like a Trike with hand controls?

Just curious as I have had a couple of clients asking about this.

Regards

Julie Hall, BHuserv – Rehabilitation Counselling

Vocational Rehabilitation Counsellor – Back2Work Project

Spinal Life Australia1300 774 625 – 0439 933 870 – 109 Logan Road, Woolloongabba, QLD. 4102.

Hi all, a quick look at some fantastic media generated by campaign endorsing partner Ron Finemore.

Ron Finemore Trucking has been active over the past couple of days talking about the importance of road data transparency and holding state and territory governments accountable.

We worked with Ron and Natasha to prepare and distribute the attached release to national and local media. Ron took the opportunity to call through to ABC breakfast and drive programmes to discuss his thoughts on road safety issues and data provision. 

See some of the media generated at ABC NSW Drive (starting at 2:31:00 ) and press at the Border Mail.

Today we’re amplifying this by playing back Ron’s comments on AAA social media at Facebook, LinkedInand Twitter/X.

If you’d like to distribute your own comments to media, or take to the airwaves like Ron, we’re here to help. Your voice will raise the volume of the campaign ask and make the commonsense solution harder to ignore.

Thanks again for your support sharing and amplifying on your digital channels,

Blake Reeves

Digital Content Manager

Harley Davidson safety recall. The Hobart Mercury. September 20, 2023.

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia supports the MCEP Driver Awareness Month in October 2023 and urges individual Victorian riders and motorcycle clubs to attend the launch. Please pass this information on to as many riders and interested people as you can. 

“Join us (MCEP/TAC/VICPOL/DoT) for the exciting launch event of Motorcyclist Awareness Month (MAM) on Sunday, October 1, 2023 at the Skyline Federation Square. Get ready to celebrate and promote motorcyclist awareness with fellow enthusiasts and experts in the field. At the MAM launch event, you’ll have the opportunity to engage in various activities aimed at raising awareness about motorcyclist safety. Connect with like-minded individuals, including seasoned riders, industry professionals, and safety advocates. Share your experiences, learn from others, and discover valuable insights to enhance your own safety on the road. Don’t miss this chance to be a part of the Motorcyclist Awareness Month launch event. It’s time to come together and make a difference in the motorcycle community. Mark your calendars and join us for an unforgettable day of fun, education, and camaraderie!When? Sun, 1 Oct 2023 10:30 AM – 1:30 PM AEDT. Where? Skyline @ Federation Square, Russell St Ext Melbourne, VIC 3000.

This is a free event. For more information: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/…/motorcyclist-awareness…Organised by Motorcyclist Awareness Month – an initiative of the Victorian Motorcycling Community Engagement Panel (MCEP) and is supported by the Transport Accident Commission, the Department of Transport and Planning and Victoria Police. Share the Road. Keep Everyone Safe.” 

The MRAA ran Biketober with 10,000 bike Driver Awareness Rides and displays in major shopping centres back in the 1980s. The first MCEP Motorcycle Awareness Month in 2022 generated very little publicity and therefore very little car driver awareness. However, the first aim of the MRAA then and now was and is ROAD SAFETY so I reckon we are obliged to promote and publicise this campaign. The attached poster is for the 6th MRAA Motorcycle Month in 1985. The campaign had gone national by then. The clipping showing bikes on the Tullamarine Freeway is from the Melbourne Sun in during the MRAA Driver Awarenes Month in 1983. The TV news reported 5000 bikes on the Tullamarine Freeway. Another channel reported up to 10,000 bikes left the car park opposite the Melbourne Zoo. They travelled to the airport loop and back to the Showgrounds to the MRAA Motorcycle Expo.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

Denis Napthine MP at a protest against the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) motorcycle levy in 2004(?).

The Melbourne Herald Sun. Thursday, August 31, 2023.

Q7. The MRAA compulsory third party insurance and the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) $78 pa anti motorcycle tax. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BZ8XY7L


The MRAA wrote to tourism departments in every state and territory. Tasmania is the only state we have found that has actually produced a video. A link to the long version is below. A shorter version is run on the big screens on the TT Line ferries on Bass strait.
Damien


Department of Jobs, Skills, Industry and Regions Victoria.
June 14, 2023. “In relation to your request for access to published reports, statistics or videos on motorcycle or scooter tourism, unfortunately we do not have any such material available.”

I would have thought with Phillip Island racing and Melbourne/Geelong being the gateway to Tasmania someone in government would have done some research into motorcycle rider spending since the first Moto GP in 1989. Either they do not want to make what information they have available or the tourism bureaucrats have not done any research on two-wheel tourers. When do they tour? Where do they go? How much do they spend each day? This is not the first time the MRAA has called on Victorian governments to take motorcycle tourism seriously do some research.

https://lnkd.in/giMRe_dW Click on the link for touring motorcyclists in Tasmania.

https://lnkd.in/gnQw5jaJ Mal Peters in Queensland sent the Carinthia link. https://www.visitcarinthia.at/motorcycle/

Damien Codognotto OAMSpokesperson
Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

CAR AUTOPILOTS FAIL 700 TIMES IN THE USA

The Melbourne Herald Sun. June 13, 2023.

The Melbourne Herald Sun. June 14, 2023.

WHY NOT PROMOTE ENTRY LEVEL & COMMUTER MOTORCYCLING NOW?

It seems to me that 2023 is the ideal time for the Australian Motorcycle Industry to pool resources to promote safe entry level and commuter motorcycle & scooter riding and to make training and licencing less complicated and expensive. That does not mean lowering skill levels but it would improve safety, encourage legal use of road bikes and be good for business.

Damien.

MRAA

The Melbourne Herald Sun. June 5, 2023.

The Hobart Mercury. June 5, 2023.

SEVERE CRASHES UP AFTER COVID. WHY?

The Hobart Mercury. June 5, 2023.

FIRST AID CALL

LIGHTS-ON LIVES

On 2 Jun 2023, at 7:51 am, drafting4 <drafting4@bigpond.com> wrote:

Good morning Damien,

Interesting news this morning that the Monash University published a study that showed that daytime running lights could ‘reduce the risk of crashes by as much as 20 per cent’ (Herald Sun). How would they know this? Where are the statistics of incidence of road collision where head lights are on or off? What data has been collected? Motorcyclists have had compulsory DRLs for years. What do the statistics say about how that has worked out? When they say study, do they just mean someone woke up this morning and thought it might be a good idea? I’m all for road safety, and not against DRLs by the way, but imagine what results these studies would have if they were based on actual data! 

Gotta justify all that government funding with something I suppose…

Jim Corbic

The Workshop Drafting Studio

Western Victoria.

From: damien codognotto <damienkcodognotto@gmail.com> 
Sent: Friday, June 2, 2023 8:45 AM
To: 0312 MRAA V CORBIC <drafting4@bigpond.com>
Subject: Re: daytime running lights

I agree Jim.

A dramatic claim like this is based on opinion not science. It looks good. However, The refusal of Victoria’s “road safety partners” to commission simple and inexpensive research into motorcycle lights-on and the failure of lights-on to reduce road registered motorcycles & scooters from being hit by cars does not increase confidence in this latest Monash conspicuity report. Common sense does not, in my opinion indicate that lights-on works. Postal workers on bikes, police riders and road workers, all hi viz. get hit by cars all the time. I’d like to see some unbiased research into the causes of those casualties.

Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) has been pushing conspicuity/visibility/lights-on since the 1990s. We have never seen any real science showing lights-on works let alone reduces crashes by 20%. Quote. “A study found by Monash University … found the technology could reduce the risk of crashes by up to 20%.”  COULD REDUCE?!?

My guess is the new MP acted in good faith after contact with MUARC.

I would very much like to know who funded this study and how much it cost. I would like to see an independent expert review of the methodology and the data but even using FoI they won’t allow unbiased scrutiny.

Comparing driving/riding conditions in Australia with Canada does not enhance credibility. 

THE HERALD SUN. June 2, 2023.

The Melbourne Herald Sun Editorial and letters. June 2, 2023.

Email: hsletters@heraldsun.com.au Text: 0499 972 948.

The term “lights-on” means use of vehicle headlights in daylight.”When we have clear evidence that by simply turning our lights on we can reduce the likelihood of death or serious injury on our roads then we must act.”

Where is this clear evidence? When was the research done and where? How much did it cost us? What kind of headlights was the research done on and in what situations? Is this another case of MUARC leading the media around by the nose.

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia (MRAA) has been calling for research into lights-on for road motorcycles & scooters since the 1992 Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety (PIMS). As far as we know, no unbiased research has been done on motorcycle lights-on or car lights-on in Australian conditions. Driving/riding conditions in Australia are very different to North America and Europe. Crash and injury data exists for 10 years before and 10 years after the introduction of the lights-on ADR for motorcycles but, in spite of recommendations to undertake this relatively simple and inexpensive research, it has not been done.

It seems certain that lights-on introduced as state/territory laws creates a legal minefield. Revs Magazine commissioned a law firm to look at the roadworthy/insurance consequences for motorcyclists after a crash if the car driver told police “I did not see the bike. It did not have its’ light on”. Lights-on can only be done nationally as an Australian Design Rule (ADR). The question is. Will it reduce the road toll? It has not reduced the road registered motorcycle and scooter toll over 20 years.

Regardless of that fact, Dr Alexandra Douglas introduced a lights-on law in a recent Victorian graduated licence system upgrade. Novice riders must now use light switches on their bikes in daylight, switches that had not existed for 20 years. Just about all road bikes have been hard wired for decades.

Lights-on for motorcyclists creates safety problems that have never been studied in spite of repeated requests and the huge road/CTP/levy costs riders contribute to the system.

Coming out of the sun lights-on hides riders.

A single motorcycle headlight gets hidden in a line of cars with headlights blazing.

Approaching intersections a single bright headlight makes it harder for car drivers to judge the speed and distance of the motorcycle.

Newer types of headlamp can dazzle riders and drivers.

The driving task has been dumbed down to a dangerous extent and in-car distractions have increased. Lights-on may lead some drivers to be over confident and less alert to other road users.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

HERALD SUN. June 2, 2023.

HERALD SUN. June 3, 2023.

HERALD SUN. June 6, 2023.

“On Wednesday (May 31, 2023), another motion put by the opposition to recognise the poor state of roads was voted down in the Legislative Council.”

“ … opposition spokeswoman Georgie Crozier said. ‘Victoria is broke and Victorians are paying the price with federal and state budgets cutting road funding at a time when our roads have never been worse and the road toll has skyrocketed.’ 

If they wanted to reduce crashes in rural Victoria at least, they should stop installing wire rope barriers and put the money saved into road repairs.

Damien

MRAA

Thanks Damien, you may use my comments as you see fit.

Jim

MRAA

The 2023 Victorian State Budget

Vehicle costs will rise dramatically while funds to repair Victoria’s neglected country roads will fall. The Melbourne Herald Sun. May 24, 2023.

Much loved Melbourne priest Father Bob Maguire passed away on April 19, 2023.

Father Bob at the TOY RUN for Father Bob in St Kilda in 2015. There is a video of the 2016 TOY RUN for Father Bob at the Collingwood footy ground in Abbotsford.

AUSTROADS

From Cate.

Austroads RoadWatch May 2023.

Motorcycle Rider Perceptive Countermeasures | Register

Tuesday 13 June 2023, 1pm AEST

Register for this session to learn about the results of a lane marking layout trial designed to influence the travelling speed and lane position of motorcyclists to enhance their safety at critical curves along regional and rural routes.

Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme Update | Register

Thursday 15 June 2023, 1pm AEST

The Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme was introduced in NSW in 2002 and later adopted by VIC, QLD, NT, WA, TAS and New Zealand. A formal review has not been conducted since its introduction. Tune in to our webinar with Dr Tana Tan to learn about the improvements to the scheme for optimal safety outcomes for novice motorcycle riders.

When the Rider, not the Rubber, Hits the Road Register

Tuesday 20 June 2023, 1pm AEST

Can motorcycle protective clothing really prevent serious injuries in motorcycle crashes? Join this webinar with Dr Liz de Rome to hear about the mechanisms and limits of motorcyclist’s protective clothing, the prevalence and types of injuries, the limitations of standards, the challenges to manufacturers and road authorities in factoring motorcycle PPE into a safe system

Evaluation and Reporting of Automated Vehicle Trials Register

Thursday 3 August 2023, 1pm AEST

In this webinar you will learn about Austroads’ new guidance for evaluation and reporting of automated vehicle trials. The guidance seeks to improve consistency as an enabler and contributor to improved knowledge sharing across jurisdictions. 

All upcoming Austroads webinarsThere is no charge for our webinars, but registration is essential. If you can’t make the live session, register and we will send you a link to the recording.

Also, some ‘techy’ ones that Michael may be interested in re road design? The stat’s links could be useful, particularly in identifying what’s missing?

BITRE research BITRE has released their Road Trauma Australia: 2022 Statistical Summary. It is the latest in their series of annual road crash statistical reports and is available for download on their website. BITRE’s monthly bulletin contains current counts and summaries of road crash deaths and fatal road crashes in Australia. Data are sourced from the road traffic or police authorities in each jurisdiction. You can also view monthly updated road safety statistics and an Australian Road Deaths Database.

The annual Australasian Road Safety Conference is in Cairns on 19-21 September 2023.

Should the MRAA do some fund raising to send a representative to Cairns in September?

Damien

MRAA

FATHER BOB NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT


FATHER BOB NEEDS YOUR SUPPORT.

Send an email to hsletters@heraldsun.com.au

The article is from the Melbourne Herald Sun. April 18, 2023.

LETTERS

THE HERALD SUN

I have known Father Bob all my 73 years. He was a regular at the family restaurant. He was my chaplain in cadets. He married my mates. He buried my folks. He is a great man who spends his life serving others. Melbourne is proud of him. 

On the other hand, Melbourne should be deeply ashamed of the disgraceful way Bob has been treated by the Father Bob Foundation.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Hobart

On Tuesday, April 8, 2023, I met with Senator Carol Brown in her Hobart office. Senator Brown is the Federal Assistant Transport Minister. My main question was why and the Federal Government specifically excluded road registered electric motorcycles from incentive schemes paying people buying a new electric vehicle.

We also discussed motorcycle tourism, international licences, hire cars and the TT Line ferries. Then the National Road Safety Action Plan and more uniform crash data collection and assessment across Australia. Last, but not least, was the Federal LOOK BIKE campaign of the 1980s.

Damien Codognotto OAM

MRAA Spokesperson Damien Codognotto OAM with Federal Assistant Transport Minister Senator Carol Brown. April 8, 2023.
This 1980s driver awareness campaign was developed by the Federal Government in association with the MRAA.

The Hobart City Council

The Department of State Growth

Tasmania

To the best of our knowledge, neither the Hobart City Council nor the Department of State Growth has done anything much to improve facilities for road registered motorcycle & scooter riders in the CBD, the greater Hobart area or at park & ride facilities in the last five years.

At least 90% of road motorcycle owners also own a car. They pay registration fees and MAIB premiums on each vehicle plus the safety levy. Most riders pay road fees and premiums twice. Riders contribute financially to our transport system more than any other road users. They do less damage to the environment and infrastructure. They reduce traffic congestion and car parking shortages. They deserve a fair go when it comes to secure parking with lockers for protective clothing.

From the latest Bicycle Network newsletter. “PLANNING POLICIES BACK BIKE PARKING AND PATHS”. Well done Bicycle Network.

From the latest FONZ MOTO newsletter. “REDUCING OUR CARBON FOOTPRINT HAS NEVER BEEN MORE IMPORTANT”.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

PO Box 2102, Howrah, Tasmania  7018.

mraa.net.au

www.facebook.com/damien.codognotto.9 

fonzmoto.com.au

A lot of money is spent on secure bicycle parking around Australia but virtually nothing is spent on motorcycle parking.
Councillor Posselt met with MRAA Spokesperson Damien Codognotto OAM at the Hobart Town Hall to discuss motorcycle parking. November 21, 2022.

Distracted driver rules in Victoria, Australia.

April 13, 2023.

VICTORIA CALLS FOR SUBMISSIONS ON ROAD USER BEHAVIOUR SINCE COVID

The Melbourne Age. April 6, 2023.

PARIS BANS STEP-ON ELECTRIC SCOOTERS

The Hobart Mercury. April 6, 2023.

bay939.com.au

From an MRAA Member.

It appears the blue car went through the wire rope barrier (WRB). The WRB is in a spoon drain so quite low. It would be interesting to know if the car was at speed and was in fact airborne or if the WRB did not do its’ job and lay over due to the uprights being in the wet spoon drain. Quite a lot of barrier installs on this section and through to Winchelsea look quite badly installed. Just post in concrete footing in ground of highly reactive clay soil. 

I was sent a live scene from Geelong TV. 


A mate of mine has been past the area. The blue car appears to have crossed from the Melbourne bound lanes across the wide median strip and head on into the Colac bound lanes hitting a black ute which was towing a trailer. It flattened WRB posts. The posts were still in the ground but bent flat. It seems the blue car was not restrained by the WRB.


A mate of mine has been past the area. The blue car appears to have crossed from the Melbourne bound lanes across the wide median strip and head on into the Colac bound lanes hitting a black ute which was towing a trailer. It flattened WRB posts. The posts were still in the ground but bent flat. It seems the blue car was not restrained by the WRB.

MRAA Member

Damien, 

I’ve found some footage, however, the accompanying text is the official VicPol media release below, ie no additional information.  Curiously, there is no mention of the motorcycle seen lying on the ground, or the rider.  Assuming they may’ve escaped injury, and were probably in one of the Ambulances pictured on-site being checked over.

All other media available have used VicPol media release below.

Cate 🙂

MRAA

https://www.facebook.com/watch/?ref=search&v=677394831064273&external_log_id=1bd530de-bad2-447d-8f5a-a5da2e692663&q=Bell%20Post%20Hill%20Geelong%20Ring%20Road

Double fatal collision in Bell Post Hill

Thursday 30 March 2023 6:28pm

Police are investigating a fatal collision in Bell Post Hill this evening.

It is understood two vehicles collided on Geelong Ring Road about 5.25pm.

Sadly, the driver and passenger of one of the vehicles both died at the scene.

The five occupants of the second vehicle, two adults and three children, are being taken to hospital with minor injuries.

The exact circumstances surrounding the collision are yet to be determined and investigations remain ongoing.

Anyone who witnessed the crash or with dashcam footage is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au

For the current provisional lives lost tally please see https://www.police.vic.gov.au/road-safety-0 

Katherine McLeod

Media Officer

114063

Thanks Cate.

It looks like the motorcycle was on the trailer behind the black ute. 

Notice the police report does not mention a barrier being involved at all.

Damien

MRAA

BURNIE, TASMANIA, WILL FIX MOTORCYCLE PARKING

The Hobart Mercury. April 3, 2023.

DIFFERENTIAL SPEED LIMITS

From Damien Codognotto OAM – March 27,2023.

Recently, a Pulse Hobart story prompted the issue of differential speed restrictions for motorcyclists in Tasmania to be raised. We have written to the Road Safety Advisory Council (RSAC) asking for more information and stating that the MRAA has opposed differential speed limits because they are dangerous.

I will post that letter in about a week’s time.

In the 1970s, Victoria had an 80 kph speed restriction on motorcycles carrying pillion passengers. From memory it was 80 kph on L platers too.

The campaign included thousands of back patches worn every day so car drivers knew what we wanted. We ran three protest runs. The one pictured on the west gate bridge drew 5000 bikes and went to Geelong and back. We won because it was a pre war (WW2) and roads and vehicles had improved. The law was dangerous and riders supported their MRAA in big numbers.

From Terry.

Currently Learner and P1 licence holders are restricted to 80km/h. The GLS Review is looking at removing that restriction. Once a rider moves to P2 that restriction is removed. Assuming they progress their licence as required, it means they are restricted for 18 months.

The argument is that novice drivers can go faster. Novice drivers are protected by a passenger cell, seatbelts, seatbelt pre tensioners, airbags and collapsible controls. Motorcyclists are not.

I am not aware of differential speed crashes being a problem in Tasmania at present.

Terminal velocity is an issue. Let’s say a novice rider has sufficient skill to scrub a maximum of 40km/h of their speed prior to impact, if they were doing 80km/h they hit the object at 40km/h which is survivable. If they were doing 100km/h they strike at 60km/h far more likely to be fatal.

The GLS review fails to address that issue.

From John Eacott. Queensland Motorcycle Council.

NSW learners are also restricted, in their case 90kph. Driving/riding to Sydney on the Pacific Highway at 110kph and encountering a learner at 90kph really does nothing to enhance anyone’s safety.

SECURE MOTORCYCLE PARKING

The MRAA is working to improve motorcycle parking in Victoria and Tasmania. Park & Ride facilities lack secure road motorcycle & scooter parking with lockers. These facilities are being installed around Hobart.

‘We are working it out’: E-scooter giant vows to tackle footpath hazard. 

“The Age” By Patrick Hatch

February 22, 2023 — 5.00am

E-scooter rental giant Lime has promised it can stop customers illegally riding its devices on footpaths if permitted to remain operating in Melbourne after a controversial trial finishes next month. Lime’s general manager for Australia, Hugo Burt-Morris, said additional work needed to be done to prevent misuse of the 2500 hire e-scooters deployed across Melbourne, but rider behaviour had improved since they landed on city streets 12 months ago.“We’re only a year into the trial and we’re testing a new mode of mobility. Frankly … [it] takes a very long time for people to get a strong understanding of the rules,” he said. “This is exceptionally early on in understanding how these interact with our existing modes of transport. And we are working it out very quickly.”

Electric scooters are illegal to ride on Victorian roads, but San Francisco-based Lime and competitor Neuron are permitted to operate 2500 hire scooters in the City of Melbourne, Yarra and Port Phillip under a trial launched in February last year. The Department of Transport extended the trial by two months, to March 31, earlier this year so it could collect “the best possible data set” while it decides whether to legalise rental and privately owned e-scooters. The trial has been marred by people frequently           riding and parking scooters on busy footpaths, with advocates for the elderly, vision-impaired people and pedestrians saying the vehicles are a menace to public safety.

Burt-Morris said Lime and Neuron, as well as local councils and the state government, had not done enough to educate riders about the road rules, while his company hoped to develop technology to detect when someone was riding on a footpath. “I still have confidence that these incident rates of footpath riding, or even just general misuse, will continue to decline,” he said.

Victoria Walks chief executive Ben Rossiter said the trial had already demonstrated Lime and Neuron could not stop dangerous behaviour. “They haven’t been able to address these issues, so we shouldn’t believe that they think they can,” he said. “Just look at the inner-areas where the trial is – they’re just everywhere.”

NB  Open link to article below, and view video . . . “After being seriously injured when hit by an e-scooter, Julia Miller believes there needs to be regulation to make them safer for riders and pedestrians alike.”

https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/we-are-working-it-out-e-scooter-giant-vows-to-tackle-footpath-hazard-20230221-p5cmbf.html

Rossiter said the scooters should not be permitted until there was a solution to footpath riding and hazardous parking, plus consistent police enforcement of road rules and a comprehensive insurance scheme. A loophole in Lime and Neuron’s insurance schemes means riders and any third party they injure, such as pedestrians, are not covered if the rider was on a footpath or not wearing a helmet. Burt-Morris said Lime staff monitored rates of footpath riding during the trial through visual surveys, which showed rates of misuse had fallen. Lime declined to share this data with The Age. He said a key reason people rode on footpaths was they did not feel safe on Melbourne’s roads, and the city would need better bike lanes and designated parking zones if e-scooters became part of the transport landscape. In London and Paris, Lime’s customers can park only in designated areas, including converted on-street car parking spots, and the company fines riders who do the wrong thing. Rossiter raised concerns that the Department of Transport was making decisions about the trial based on data collected by Lime and Neuron themselves, which would give “the most rosy picture” possible, while running limited consultation with stakeholder groups and the public. It was also unclear if true rates of injuries and illegal riding were being tracked, with police fines representing only the “tip of the iceberg”, he said.

A spokesperson for the Department of Transport said it was “evaluating key information while working closely with Victoria Police, participating local councils and e-scooter operators” as the trial neared its conclusion. Lime and Neuron say Melbourne has been one of the most successful cities in which they have launched, with 2.8 million rides taken within the City of Melbourne alone in the first 11 months. Burt-Morris said that if they are allowed to stay in Melbourne, the number of hire scooters deployed across the three council areas could easily double to 5000 to meet rider demand, and they could triple to 7500 if allowed to expand to new council areas. Lime is the largest player in a global group of start-ups competing in the new field of “micromobility”. It operates in 250 cities across 30 countries, backed with hundreds of millions of dollars from private investors including Uber, and has been reportedly considering a sharemarket listing since at least 2021.

The hire schemes have proved divisive as cities grapple with how to regulate them. Norway’s capital Oslo recently banned rentals at night in an attempt to reduce drunken crashes, while Paris will hold a vote in April on whether to ban rental scooters.

https://www.theage.com.au/world/europe/extremely-divisive-parisians-to-vote-on-whether-to-ban-rental-e-scooters-after-deaths-20230116-p5ccs1.html

To MRAA members.

March 9, 2023.‘Morning All.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BZ8XY7L  690 responses to March 9, 2023. We need 2000. This will save money for car drivers as well as motorcycle riders.


We sent an email to all Victorian MPs and many others. Here are three responses. There seems to be too much confusion between unregistered, step-on electric scooters and road registered electric scooters. We are seeking answers to why the Federal Government would specifically exclude new registered electric scooters from subsidy schemes designed to encourage the use of electric vehicles. It defies logic. In my opinion, it is yet more prejudice against the Australian motorcycle community.

Not a definitive list by any means.


Before anyone starts being rude about us backing or not backing your favourite political team, the MRAA is not party political. That means we treat MPs as MPs. If an MP does good for motorcycling, we say so. If he/she does bad, we say so. Unelected officials are paid by the tax payer and therefore not the top of the heap. In my experience, lobbying any other way just does not work. Also, before anyone starts on about registered electric motorcycles & scooters, I’m old and old fashioned. I like gears and some engine noise and vibration. I do not like or trust gizmology BUT gizmology will increase and electric bikes are inevitable so it is the MRAA’s role to get the best deal it can for its’ members. The Feds excluding electric road motorcycles from their subsidy scheme could be the thin edge of a wedge unless someone makes a legitimate, loud noise objecting to this exclusion. No one else seems to be doing it.

MRAA membership is free.  
Damien

March 8, 2023

Dear Damien

Thanks so much for calling my Richmond office today and for your email and information you’ve provided.

I appreciate you bringing this issue to my attention. It is certainly a fair and reasonable question to ask government why electric motorcycles would not be included in any subsidy programs that are provided to encourage purchasing of electric vehicles. I’ll keep a close eye on this issue and the Government’s response to it.

If you haven’t already, I’d encourage you to seek a direct response from representatives of the federal government as well.

Yours sincerely

Senator Claire Chandler

Shadow Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs

Liberal Senator for TasmaniaMarch 8, 2023.


Hi Damien,
As the transport portfolio holder Katherine is happy to be your key contact within the Greens state parliament and receive MRAA’s queries.
Thank you for laying out your 7 priority areas of concern for Katherine to look over. 
Transport emissions are the largest growing source of climate pollution in Victoria and we need to rapidly reduce these emissions to address climate change. The majority of this pollution comes from petrol cars and trucks and we must provide people with alternatives in order to reduce emissions. Whilst the Greens often communicate a priority to increase spending for active transport (cycling and walking), and make EVs more accessible, we also recognise the role motorcycles play.
Not only do motorcycles have a lighter footprint when manufacturing, they can also be a lower emitting option of transport for many users.
As with cyclists and pedestrians, the Greens are committed to making our roads safer for all users, no matter their mode of transport. We will continue our work of pushing the State Labor Government to improve dangerous road infrastructure to prevent fatalities and injuries.
Katherine is working actively with government and non-government stakeholders to push for improved safety on our roads, and to make climate-friendly transport options more accessible to those who wish to use them.

Kind regards,

Liv Morgan

Electorate Officer 

For Katherine Copsey MPMember for Southern Metro (Melbourne)

From: damien codognotto <damienkcodognotto@gmail.com
Sent: Monday, 6 March 2023 10:34 AM
To: Richard Riordan <Richard.Riordan@parliament.vic.gov.au>
Subject: ROAD MOTORCYCLE & SCOOTER RESEARCH IS AN INVESTMENT

Richard Riordan MP

Member for Polwarth

G’day Richard.

The issues in this email may interest you. Please note the Tasmanian Government video for touring motorcyclists encouraging various safety tips including wearing the right gear. It’s a seriously different approach to the seriously expensive TAC’s shock/horror campaign in Victoria. It is a far more effective approach. Click the link for touring motorcyclists.  https://www.rsac.tas.gov.au/visitingdrivers/ 

Also, please note Steve Bardsley’s paper on motorcycle stereotypes. 

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

March 8, 2023.

Thanks Damien,

Appreciate being kept in the loop. I was interested in your letter in support of more electric motorbikes and scooters on our roads.

What are your views on the current laws around e-scooters?

Probably the big issue is at what point should an e-scooter be registered as a motorbike? Ie top speed/power output considerations.
Richard is in support of encouraging more of these for the obvious reasons you outlined in your letter. Regards,

Toby Campbell Electorate Officer
For Richard Riordan MP. Member for Polwarth in Victoria.

Thanks for getting back to us Toby.

We are in favour of Australian made, electric, road registered, commuter motorcycles & scooters. These are very different to the imported, electric, unregistered, CTP insured step-on scooters currently being pushed in Australian cities. Australian Governments complain about traffic congestion in our cities. Around 70% of traffic is made up of cars & SUVs carrying just one person. Obviously, one way to reduce traffic congestion in urban areas is to encourage alternatives to single-occupant cars.

The Federal Government gives buyers of new electric cars a cash subsidy. This does nothing to reduce congestion or free up parking space for people who must use cars. Electric, road-registered commuter motorcycles & scooters reduce congestion, free up car parking space and do a lot less road damage than cars. So why does the Federal Government specifically exclude buyers of new, Australian made road motorcycles & scooters from the subsidy scheme? How do they justify this exclusion?

Making Australian motorcycles & scooters keeps jobs, skills and profits in Australia and reduces our reliance on imports.

Re step-on electric “scooters”. Governments scramble to be seen to promote the new gizmology. Step-on riders are subject to few rules and those are difficult to enforce. To even come close to effective enforcement cities and tourist towns will require a permanent on-street enforcement presence, a major drain on police resources.

Compare step-ons to road registered commuter scooters. One has real benefits to Australian society, the other does not. Then there are the safety issues for riders hitting cars and pedestrians. The attached Victorian hospital admissions chart says a lot. 

By banning public use of privately owned step-ons the Andrews Government in Victoria has effectively given a sort of monopoly to two profit seeking companies. I don’t think that is good for either road/footpath safety or for the economy. Why not support a local regulated product over the effectively unregulated import?

Damien
MRAA

MRA TAS RALLY

February 25, 2023.

LETTERS – THE HERALD SUN

The Editorial (25/2/2023) says traffic congestion is holding Melbourne and Victoria back. Infrastructure and public transport have failed to keep pace with increasing population and people’s need for mobility. Mismanagement of resources and resistance to improving transport systems has contributed to our traffic woes.

Single-occupant cars are some seventy percent of traffic. Most are big five or more seat vehicles that park for more time than they clog urban arteries. So why don’t road authorities offer real alternatives to car commuting and incentives to make the change? Promote Australian made, road registered, electric motorcycles & scooters. Entry level motorcycles can’t be compared to toy vehicles. Riders must be trained and licensed. Machines must be identifiable. They can’t go on footpaths. 150 plus kilometres range for commuting and a good payload for shopping, works in urban areas. Parking is easy. New road bike price and running costs are a fraction of car costs. Two bonus points. Motorcycling in Victoria is safer than it has ever been. Australian made bikes keep skills, jobs and profits here.

As traffic congestion gets worse and living gets more expensive, government, the RACV and the motorcycle industry should promote entry level motorcycles, especially locally made machines, to reduce the pain of gridlocked streets and rising living costs.

Damien Codognotto OAM

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

Attachments from the Melbourne Herald Sun (25/2/2023) and the Hobart Mercury.

February 12, 2023.

Motorcycle road safety audit closes February 28, 2023.

February 10, 2023.

write a letter to the Herald Sun. hsletters@heraldsun.com.au

February 2023.

One of Victoria’s top policemen has described the state’s showpiece anti-bikie law as “difficult to enforce” and revealed police have asked the State Government to change it.

As police across the country declare war on bikie gangs, Victoria’s Deputy Commissioner Graham Ashton has told the ABC it has been too difficult for police to prove an outlaw motorcycle gang is a criminal organisation.

A year after the law was announced, police have yet to make a single application to criminalise an organisation.

“We’ve certainly made it clear that these are going to be difficult laws to enforce, but we’re not wringing our hands saying that we’ve been given dud legislation,” Mr Ashton said. 

“We understand that the legislation is difficult to draft and it has to strike a balance. 

These are going to be difficult laws to enforce, but we’re not wringing our hands saying that we’ve been given dud legislation.

“It’s up to us to try and reach an application that meets that standard, and we just haven’t been able to do that.”

Under the Criminal Organisation Control Act, which the Government introduced last year with great fanfare, police have to convince a Supreme Court judge that an organisation is involved in serious criminal activity.

There are four elements the police have to prove: That are that the alleged crime is systemic, involves substantive planning, involves two or more people and that there has to be a motive.

“It will be a challenge, because we’ve not only got to establish those four points, but we’ve got to establish them to a level of beyond reasonable doubt,” Mr Ashton said. 

“In a number of jurisdictions that level is at the balance of probabilities, we’ve got to meet the criminal standard of proof. 

“Quite often where we find cases where we’ve met the criminal standard we’ve already put someone before the courts and they’re in our jail system. It’s quite a high test to make.”

Australia’s outlaw motorcycle gangs

Do you know your Hells Angels from your Rebels? Find out about Australia’s major bikie gangs with our explainer.

Read more

Senior police have met with the state’s Attorney-General Robert Clark and officials from the Department of Justice.

They raised the prospect of amending the law to lower the bar for proving serious criminal activity, but Mr Ashton said he was “not aware” of any plans to make amendments.

He also revealed that police have asked the Government for the power to apply for control orders against outlaw motorcycle gangs on the grounds that they have been declared criminal organisations in other Commonwealth countries, such as Canada.

When asked whether the Government was considering changing the legislation, as requested by police, Attorney-General Robert Clark told the ABC he was talking to police about the issue.

“We’ve discussed the full gamut of legislation in terms of how the existing legislation is operating, what other opportunities for new legislation, how we can tackle firearms laws, how we can tackle asset confiscation, unexplained wealth laws,” he said.

“We’re keen to support Victoria Police to ensure they’ve got the tools they need to tackle these gangs.”

Mr Clark also said the Government was watching closely to see whether Queensland’s anti-bikie laws – which make it substantially easier for police to apply for bikie gangs to be criminalised than in Victoria – were successful.

Do you know more? Email investigations@abc.net.au

DON’T JUST SIT THERE!

If you feel strongly about the proposed bans in Victoria, write a letter to Melbourne’s Herald Sun.

hsletters@heraldsun.com.au

I did.

LETTERS

THE HERALD SUN

VicPol wants colours, patches and logos on selected clubs’ motorcycle clothing banned. It made the Herald Sun’s front page and editorial on February 3. The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia does not support the proposed bans. Restricting what a whole group of people can wear because there may be criminals among them is wrong. Laws exist to fight crime. Enforce them. If an individual breaks the law, book him or her.

The MRAA does not support restricting group rides. Licenced motorcyclists riding registered, roadworthy motorcycles or scooters legally have the right to use public roads.

Who decides which organisations will be declared criminal? What are the criteria? What right of appeal will there be? Will your club or union be banned?

Damien Codognotto OAM

Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

Don’t read the herald Sun? Write to The Age. Better still write to both.

letters@theage.com.au

The Melbourne Herald Sun (Australia). Friday February 3, 2023.
The Melbourne Herald Sun (Australia). Friday, February 3, 2023.

ROADSIDE CRASH BARRIER TESTING by Bruce Corben. 2002.

Another 20 year old “road safety” paper. This one “ROADSIDE CRASH BARRIER TESTING” by Bruce Corben. 2002. In 20 years Victorian roads have changed. Vehicles have changed enormously. So has the mix and amount of traffic. Even the weather has changed. Fires, floods and strong winds seem to have increased. Roads have been neglected, particularly in rural areas. Massive amounts of our taxes have been wasted on wire rope barriers. We were told $4 billion was spent on WRB between 2015 and 2020. In 2023 the Department of Transport cries poor on funds for road surface and edge maintenance.

There has been little real road safety research done since 2000. The Laverton crash tests were more to show what Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) could do than to show what barrier type was safest. The cars crashed, Toyota Echos(?), did not represent the vehicle fleet then and certainly not in 2023. The report and edited video were ready in time for an international conference. MUARC attended. Parliamentary Inquiries recommend changes and document the lack of reliable crash/traffic data. Too many recommendations have been rejected by Victoria’s self-titled Road Safety Partners. Little has been done to improve crash data. This means in casualty crashes involving registered motorcycles & scooters the licensed rider is unfairly blamed for causing the crash in far too many cases.
Papers by Steve Bardsly are current and credible. Read “TWO DECADES OF ANTI-MOTORCYCLE BIAS HAS FAILED RIDER SAFETY” on academia.edu

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

The Weekly Times. Page 9. ROAD MAINTENANCE GOES PRIVATE by Jason Gregory.

The Victorian Transport Department has awarded multi-million dollar contracts to three companies in a move that privatises road maintenance of key regional road networks for the next three years.

The new Victorian “road maintenance contracts” will be more performance based in replacing existing “roads maintenance alliance” contracts.

Sprayline Road Services was awarded contracts for the Grampians and Loddon Mallee regions, Fulton Hogan was awarded Barwon South West and Gippsland regions, while Downer EDI Limited received the Hume region contract.

The contract amounts were not disclosed by government, but Downer revealed that its contract to maintain more than 8500km of road in the Hume region was valued at about $490 million.

The companies will perform larger-scale road repairs, including rebuilding, resurfacing and resealing roads, as opposed to more routine maintenance activities such as minor pothole repairs, repairing damaged signs, cleaning gutters and drains, mowing and clearing litter.

The contracts begin next month for an initial three-and-half-year term, with the option for two-year extensions Department of Transport and Planning officers will work alongside the contracted companies to help plan, deliver and inspect all work delivered under the new contracts.

The department road workers now doing maintenance within the zones will be offered jobs with the awarded parties.

A goverment spokesperson said it was ensuring “value for money” by providing a more performance based road maintenance contract.

“This will help ensure the industry remains competitive and works delivered are more consistent across the state. It also sets out clearer guidelines to help manage risks associated with these projects,” the spokesperson said.

Swally

MRAA

WOMEN in motorcycling.

From Ed.

A class action over brakes is good.

A class action over bad country roads in Victoria would be better. Not too many lawyers will go up against the virtually unlimited, tax-payer-funded resources controlled by VicRoads and the Victorian Department of Transport.

The Melbourne Herald Sun. Friday, January 20, 2023.

The Weekly Times. May 11, 2022.

The Melbourne Herald Sun. Friday, January 20, 2023.

The Hobart Mercury. Friday, January 20, 2023.

Sympathy and respect to the rider’s loved ones.

Are Australian made, electric, road registered motorcycles & scooters included? Or, even thought about?

The Victorian Election is on November 26, 2022.

If you are part of the Victorian Government in 2023:

1. Will you work to establish an all-party, Parliamentary Road Safety Committee?

2. Will you work to establish a crash/traffic data authority that is independent of the Victorian road safety partners as recommended by the 2012 Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety (PIMS)?

3. Will you work to ensure that Victorian Government responses to recommendations of Parliamentary road safety inquiries are written by elected representatives and experts who are independent of the road safety partners to avoid conflicts of interest?

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

mraa.net.au

Candidate Sophie Paterson.

Hi Damien,

I am a yes to all questions.

I am running in the Upper House Eastern, primarily due to the lack of focus of regional issues in Parliament, and the lack of integrity in decision making. The transfer of decision making to Government controlled bodies is a concern to me.

I’m also across and support many of the issues you raise in terms of regional road safety (increasing potholes and lack of spend to quality road infrastructure repairs) and concerns about the barriers. The Sale to Bairnsdale Road is a real issue.

I’ve attached my card if you want any information, and also the feature that appeared in the South Gippsland Times yesterday. Happy to answer any questions you have about what my priorities would be.

Regards Sophie Paterson

OATLANDS (Tas) MOTORCYCLE SHOW TO BE HELD THIS SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2022, HAD TO BE POSTPONED.

G’day Damian.

After much consideration with the Oatlands Football Club and Vintage MCC of Tasmania Executive, Sponsors and Contractors, the decision to postpone the event has been made. The VMCCT Executive will convene a meeting to come up with a new date ASAP. The decision was not made solely on the weather forecast for the weekend but many other factors.

Please pass on to your friends and contacts.

Howard

0439 481 291

The Kentish Hotel. Oatlands in Tasmania.

FOUR VOLUNTEERS NEEDED AT BASKERVILLE THIS SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 2022.

Hi Everyone

Thank you all for supporting the Skills Day for the Full Gear program at Baskerville this coming Saturday Nov 19th.

The weather is looking really good at the moment, with a top of 23 degrees and a late shower likely after we have finished for the day.

We do need 4 volunteers to man the flag points, which we can rotate throughout the day.

At other times, we are hoping that you will support the young people in their own learning, providing advice where you see fit. Remember, that the young people may get differing advice from all of you, but that’s OK, any advice you give just try to make it relevant to their own skill level.

We will place Butchers paper on the wall for each rider to record their own learnings and they will get to take this home at the end of the day. Each rider must put up something after each 10 minute session on the track this is the chance to offer feedback. Most riders will be riding their LAMS approved bike on the day. A few have dirt bikes so won’t be making any record times. The main idea is about promoting road safety and improving their skill level. Each bike has been inspected by horizon motorcycles prior to entering the track, as part of this program, and I paid for that through the funding.

I’m hoping to group together any arrivals on the day, so we are not closing the track too much. People can arrive at 8-9am, 12pm or 3pm.

I have ordered some fuel cards, and if possible, please fuel up on the way there, and I’ll reimburse you with the fuel card. Also, I have extra fuel cards if you need to run out to Gagebrook United petrol station at lunch. We will have 2 emergency jerry cans as well.

We have a photographer there for the day, and we will do some promotion after the event, most likely in the Mercury and elsewhere mentioning the MRA, Sports Riders Club, Horizon Motorcycle, Bikeworks, Bucaan Community House and others. Scott Tilyard from the Road safety Advisory Council, from our funding body will be there on the day, on his motorbike. Mayor Bec Thomas will also make an appearance as well.

Thanks again for your help

Please call me on 0478 777 020 if you need.

Regards
Conrad

So far this is the plan for Saturday:

8 am Arrival
Bike check with scrutineers (Jono and Wade from Sports Riders Club) Throttle snap back Chain tension Footpegs Tyres

Sign on for everyone – IMPORTANT WAIVER

9am Walk the track

9:30am Rider’s Briefing: Track Manager – Peter Woods
Rules: No overtaking in braking zones or on the inside
IF there is a crash, First rider to scene to help – others get off to allow recovery Entering and exit of the track Allocate 4 x Flag point volunteers Pick up radio and take positions Recovery vehicle Ambulance

10:00am – 12:00 pm TRACK SESSION
3 groups of 4 riders. 10 mins per session
Cornering – Selecting lines, entry and exit Braking while cornering Emergency braking and ABS test (if bikes equipped) – Jon will demonstrate

12:00pm LUNCH
Senior riders demonstration
PRESENTATION: Damien Codognotto on history of motorcycling 
Discussion: Hydration, sleep, eating well. Mood.

1:00pm – 3:00pm TRACK SESSION
Obstacle Avoidance/Swerving – simulate road kill under vehicle in front – chalk it Counter-steering Understanding survival response/reaction

3:00pm – PRESENTATION FROM TAS POLICE

3:30 – 5:00pm OPEN RIDE in groups (no structured lessons)

CONRAD GILBEY
Community Development Officer – Children, Youth and Families (Mon, Tues, Wed and Fri)
Full Gear Project Officer (Thu)
(03) 6216 6766 |  www.gcc.tas.gov.au
conrad.gilbey@gcc.tas.gov.au | 374 Main Road, Glenorchy

HELP WANTED.

With the floods and everything else that’s happened in 2022 lots of families need all the help they can get. Three ways you can help. Get as many people as you can to the MRAT (S) TOY RUN in Tasmania or the TOY RUN for Father BOB (in Central Victoria for the first time) or the Bikers for Kids TOY RUN in Newcastle NSW. Volunteer to help.

TRAFFIC CAMERAS in Tasmania.

In October 2022, Mrs Beverly McArthur, MP for Western Victoria, wrote. “I recently met with local farmer Peter Keays, with James Bennett-Hullin for Geelong, to discuss the dangers of wire rope barriers on the Fyansford-Gheringhap Road. The wire rope barriers on this stretch of road have been hit twenty times now, yet prior to their installation, there were no accidents. This is a total waste of taxpayer money and it’s the opposite to safe.”

#NoMoreWireRopeBarriers

https://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=FDtXm3J0dDM  

A small white car does not take the sweeping left-hand bend. It goes straight ahead towards what could have been a run-off area but for a wrongly placed fence.

Australian road authorities, definitely VicRoads, have known about wire rope barriers “vaulting” cars into the air since about 2011. The manufacturers warned VicRoads not to place wire rope barrier anchor points where they could be hit by cars. VicRoads did not listen.

The crash in this video has similarities to the quadruple fatal at Pyalong in Victoria in 2015.In the Pyalong crash the car ran up the anchor point cables, flew into the air, rolling and hit the tree well above the downward sloping road side roof first. The meant none of the car’s safety features like airbags and crumple zones were effective. Had the holden gone down the slope on its’ wheels the front of the car would have hit the trees. The crash would have been much more survivable. The VicRoads expert told the Coroner’s Court that had the wire rope barrier been placed differently or not been there the outcome would have been different. An eye witness was not called nor a statement given to the court. The crash investigators were official advisors to the Coroner. Conflict of interest? The Coroner found that the deaths occurred when the car hit the tree. No mention of the wire rope barrier or vaulting. As far as we know, no one was ever held to account for the crash. This type of wire rope barrier is still in place all over Australia. See attached. Please watch the youtube video more than once. 

Think about this. It could have been you and yours in that little white car.

The Victorian election is on Saturday, November 26, 2022. 

The candidates for seats in Parliament will be listed on the Victorian Electoral Commission’s (VEC) website on November 11. You can, and should, go to the VEC for contacts for candidates in your electorate. Tel: 131 832 or visit vec.vic.gov.au .  

Think about your vote. Everyone has different interests, health, cost of living, education, transport, defence and so on. Voting is important. The MRAA’s primary interest is road safety so we will be asking candidates the following 3 questions. Feel free to copy them and ask them too.

If you are part of the Victorian Government or Opposition in 2023: 

1. Will you work to establish an all-party, Parliamentary Road Safety Committee?   

2. Will you work to establish a crash/traffic data authority that is independent of the Victorian road safety partners as recommended by the 2012 Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety (PIMS)?   

3. Will you work to ensure that Victorian Government responses to recommendations of Parliamentary road safety inquiries are written by elected representatives and experts who are independent of the road safety partners to avoid conflicts of interest?

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

www.facebook.com/damien.codognotto.9 mraa.net.au

From the Melbourne Herald Sun. October 17, 2022.

From STEVE BARDSLEY to Ian Royall at the Melbourne Herald Sun. Monday, October 31, 2022.

Dear Ian.

Further to the Herald Sun article on unriders and how they distort motorcycle crash data, please find attached my latest report “Anti-Motorcycle Bias in Victoria”.

The report discusses on page 8 Un-riders and how they distort statistics, importantly the report highlights a much unknown phenomena regarding motorcycle statistics, which is that whenever there is a collision involving a motorcycle and another vehicle, it is usually the driver, not the rider that is at fault and my report uses empirical and undeniable evidence to prove this, unfortunately this is evidence that is not stated by the Victorian road safety partners when quoting how motorcycle riders are over represented in the accident statistics.

The harsh reality is, drivers kill riders, riders do not kill drivers and as the attached report shows, approximately 65% of motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle and 60% of those accidents are the fault of the driver. It can be seen what is needed to reduce motorcycle fatalities is driver education programs, my report shows on page 37 how these could immediately save 5 motorcycle rider lives every year (and perhaps many more).

All of my motorcycle safety reports can be found and downloaded on Academia at the following link.

https://swinburne.academia.edu/SteveBardsley


I remain available to discuss the attached and any of my reports on Academia, because until there is an end to the anti-motorcycle bias that exists in Victoria and this includes the creation of an independent Victorian office of road safety data (as recommended in the 2012 Parliamentary Inquiry into Motorcycle Safety) the truth about the real and major causes of motorcycle accidents and fatalities will not be discussed or made known and therefore cannot be used to create counter-measures to help save the lives of motorcycle riders.    

Regards
Stephen Bardsley
Rider Safety Representative
Motorcycle Riders Association of Australia

Attachments from the Herald Sun. October 31, 2022.


IAN ROYALL

THE HERALD SUN

MELBOURNE

Dear Ian.

Please find attached a copy of the RACT report on the FULL GEAR YOUTH MOTORCYCLE SAFETY PROGRAM.
One factor for some unriders is cost. Getting a road motorcycle or scooter licence is very expensive. The MRAA believes this problem will get worse as traffic congestion in cities gets worse and car parking costs more unless road authorities develop workable countermeasures. Students, job seekers and commuters will choose electric motorcycles & scooters to save time and money. Electric motorcycles are being made in Australia.

DAMIEN

MRAA

To CLARENCE CITY COUNCIL in Tasmania

Road registered motorcycle and scooter commuters need secure parking with lockers at park & ride facilities at Glebe Hill and Kangaroo Bay. There has to be an education campaign. People can’t use a facility they do not know about. Notices should be included with licence and registration renewals sent to relevant postcodes and online.

The two new park & ride facilities in Kingborough are worse than useless for motorcycle and scooter riders. The photos are of a Kingborough park & ride facility. Space for over 200 cars, maybe 100 plus bicycles and toy vehicles but just 6 motorcycle bays as an afterthought. No two-wheelers at either park & ride mid week.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

The Hobart Mercury. September 7, 2022.
Huntingfield park & ride near Kingston in Tasmania. Space for 174 cars and a secure area for bicycles but just 4 bays for motorcycles way up the back. No Lights. No cameras. No security bars. And, no lockers. October 5, 2022.
Huntingfield park & ride motorcycle bays. October 5, 2022.
Firthside park & ride near Kingston. Empty bicycle shed mid week. October 5, 2022.

A motorcyclist died in Wantirna, Victoria. A car driver may have failed to give way

Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding a fatal collision which claimed the life of a motorcyclist in Wantirna this afternoon. Emergency services were called to the intersection of Mountain Highway and Boronia Road where a car and motorcyclist collided about 2.50pm. The rider of the motorcycle, who is yet to be formally identified, died at the scene. The driver of the car was not injured and is assisting police with their enquiries. Investigations into the exact cause of the collision are ongoing. Anyone with information or dashcam/CCTV footage is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.auExternal Link. As published in MIRAGE

COMMENTS FROM THE MRAA:

Sincere sympathy to the rider’s loved ones. RIP. All unriders & undrivers should be flagged in crash data so researchers and stakeholders can develop effective countermeasures to reduce road trauma. They are not flagged in available data. Unriders and undrivers are are people using vehicles illegally, no licence, unregistered and/or unroadworthy.

Read Steve Bardsley’s THE BLAME GAME CONTINUES in Academia.

A significant part of the reason unriders exist is that motorcycle training, licencing and CTP insurance is way too expensive. This is directly the fault of road authorities. Instead of spending our money on multi-million dollar TV ads that tend to blame the victims the Transport Accident Commission should follow the lead of the Tasmanian Government and put funds into training and licensing incentives and subsidies for protective clothing using MCAP ratings.

LISTEN TO 3AW DRIVE:

Victoria’s top roads cop lashes out after ‘horror’ day on roads – 20/09/22

Victoria’s top roads cop has vented his frustration after a “horror” day on the roads, revealing half of all people killed on motorcycles on Victorian roads this year weren’t legally allowed to ride. Glenn Weir told 3AW there had been three “really serious” incidents on Victoria’s roads on Tuesday, two of which involved motorcycles. There is serious concern about the number of people being killed on motorcycles on Victorian roads this year. “What is really concerning is that half of the people who have been killed on the roads this year riding motorcycles should not have been riding because they didn’t have a licence – half!” he said. “They’re either disqualified, suspended, or have never had a licence – that is just ridiculous risk-taking behaviour that, as a community, we just cannot tolerate.”

Press PLAY below to hear Glenn Weir’s impassioned plea

VICTORIAN ELECTION 2022.

Make sure your details are up to date.

vec.vic.gov.au

To vote in November’s State election, you’ll need to be correctly enrolled by 8 pm on Tuesday 8 November.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE

Steve B spotted this notice on a Transport Accident Commission (TAC) website.

To me it looks like using a past Motorcycle Riders Association Australia activity to do a bit of campaigning for the 2022 Victorian election. There is a Victorian election in November 2022.

“The Victorian Labor Government is urging drivers and riders to look out for each other and share the roads safely, with the number of motorbikes on the roads expected to increase as the weather warms up. Marking the inaugural Motorcyclist Awareness Month, spearheaded by Victoria’s Motorcycling Community Engagement Panel (MCEP{), Minister for roads and Road Safety Ben Carroll said the initiative had been developed in collaboration with the Transport Accident Commission (TAC, Department of Transport and Victoria Police.”

Here is a the link with the claim:

https://www.tac.vic.gov.au/…/motorists-urged-to-share…

They also have a Facebook page here:

https://www.facebook.com/MotorcyclistAwarenessMonth

Here is the letter I wrote to TAC CEO Calafiore cc Minister Carroll.

Dear Sir,

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia (MRAA) supports the concept of a Motorcycle Awareness Month but it not correct to claim this is the inaugural motorcycle awareness month with Department of Transport and Police support in Victoria.

The MRAA started motorcycle awareness months in October 1980. The launches were in the world famous motorcycle precinct in Elizabeth Street, Melbourne. They included Victorian Transport Ministers and Assistant Commissioners of Police. Motorcyclist David Hawker, then Speaker off the House of Representatives from memory, attended more than one launch. The Federal Government supported these motorcycle safety campaigns with a letter from Prime Minister Bob Hawke (1991) and an appearance by Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser at the Old Treasury Building one year.

There’s a lot more material to document this history but I only got the information on the TAC claim today.

Please note the 1985 poster by Don Hatcher from MRA SA, again from memory.

Credit where credit is due.

Damien Codognotto OAM

Spokesperson

The Motorcycle Riders Association Australia

www.facebook.com/damien.codognotto.9

To October 24, 470 people have responded to the compulsory third part insurance survey. We need a lot more. If you have not already done so please do it. It’s only 11 questions. So far respondents are mostly over 45 years old, males. Women and people under 45 ride motorcycles and drive cars too. For balance we need more women and young people to respond. The survey will run to the end of the year. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BZ8XY7L