Press release

Highways England attends event to promote motorcycle safety

Highways England manned a stand for the first time at BMAD festival, one of the largest motorcycle events in the country, to promote safety for motorcyclists.

Highways England Ducati motorcycle

As part of the Peninsular Road Safety Partnership, Highways England joined forces with Devon and Cornwall Police, Devon and Somerset Fire Service and Devon County Council to promote road safety awareness at the annual BMAD motorcycling festival in Paignton, which was attended by more than 10,000 people over the first May Bank Holiday weekend.

Following the launch of the Motorcycle Safety Campaign last year, Highways England is currently engaged in the Distressed campaign, which aims to promote behavioural change to help reduced the number of young motorcycle riders killed or seriously injured across the country.

The campaign aims to address the behaviours of young scooter, moped and low-powered motorcycle riders, focusing on three key areas:

  • not checking at roundabouts and junctions
  • not checking when filtering
  • not wearing appropriate personal protective clothing (PPE)
Distressed campaign poster displaying a damaged leather jacket

Beverley Hannah, Highways England’s regional safety co-ordinator for the South West, attended the popular fundraising event, displaying items of Distressed clothing as well as one of the 10 Ducati motorcycles provided by Highways England for the BikeSafe project.

She said:

Safety is at the heart of everything we do at Highways England and we are conscious that motorcyclists are one of the most vulnerable groups of road users – in 2016, 40 motorcyclists were killed or seriously injured in the South West alone.

The event provided an ideal platform for Highways England to promote responsible riding and road safety information in conjunction with our partners, and this was well received by the many people who visited the stands.

In terms of the campaign, the Distressed clothing items each have a price tag swapping monetary value for a range of possible injuries a young rider could suffer in a collision.

The mental and physical cost of not wearing the correct motorcycle clothing can be far greater than the financial cost, and it’s important that our young riders understand that they need to be prepared and always wear the appropriate clothing when riding.

The campaign forms part of Highways England’s Safe Systems strategy focused on safer vehicles, safer roads and safer people in an effort to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured across the network by 40 per cent by 2020.

More information on motorcycle safety can be found on the Think! website.

General enquiries

Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.

Media enquiries

Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.

Published 15 May 2018