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Safety package to address $52 million problem


Motorcycle safety package to address $52 million problem

ACC Minister Maryan Street today welcomed a range of new measures designed to reduce the high number of motorcycle casualties on New Zealand roads.

"Since 2001 the number of ACC claims for motorcycle accidents has nearly doubled, and annual ACC claim costs now exceed $52 million. This doesn't include treatment in public hospitals which ACC also funds," said Maryan Street.

"Riding a motorcycle is risky. Motorcyclists make up only two per cent of vehicles on the road but account for 18 per cent of road claims received by ACC."

Recently signed off by Cabinet, the new initiatives are part of the 'Road Safety to 2010 Strategy' announced by Transport Safety Minister Harry Duynhoven today.

They include restrictions on the use of powerful motorcycles by novice riders, changes to the Graduated Driver Licensing System to encourage riders to take up more motorcycle-specific training and the introduction of safer motorcyling practices such as improving the visibility of motorcycle and moped riders to other road users.

These initiatives will complement the existing injury prevention work being done by agencies like ACC, Maryan Street said.

"While in three quarters of accidents the motorcyclist was not at fault, there are things they can do to make themselves safer. For example, a recent ACC campaign encouraged motorcyclists to wear high visibility vests and keep their headlight on during the day."


ENDS

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