"Gear Up" for Motorcycle Safety
Press Release 7 Oct 2010
"If you're riding with just a pair of jeans and t-shirt, you may as well be riding naked," Quote Mick Doohan
Minister for Road Safety Jack Snelling today launched the next phase of the Motor Accident Commission's motorcycle safety campaign featuring five-time 500cc MotoGP World Champion, Mick Doohan.
"The new 'Gear Up' road safety education campaign will specifically highlight the risks of riding without the appropriate protective clothing," Mr Snelling said.
"It follows the successful first phase launched 12 months ago featuring a confronting television commercial showing the dangers faced by motorcyclists.
"The ongoing MAC campaign is the first to specifically target motorcyclists in South Australia with research showing they're 30 times more likely to be killed on our roads than a motorist.
"Motorcyclists are fully exposed to all the elements and are also particularly vulnerable to injury if they're involved in a crash.
"The campaign aims to alert riders about the risks they face on the road and encourages them to take responsibility for their own safety by wearing the right protective clothing," Mr Snelling said.
Speaking at the launch, Mick Doohan said the right protective clothing could make the difference between a nasty fall and injuries preventing you from ever riding again.
"My gear saved me on many occasions, both on and off the track. Wearing the right gear, such as gloves, jackets, trousers and footwear can certainly help to reduce injuries in a motorcycle crash.
"If you're riding with just a pair of jeans and t-shirt, you may as well be riding naked," he said.
MAC Chairman, Roger Cook said 2005-2009 figures showed that motorcyclists accounted for 13% of fatalities, 12% of serious injuries and 6% of causalities on our roads, yet they accounted for less than 1% of the total kilometres travelled.
"Most motorcyclists are aware of their vulnerability, but consider protective clothing as more of a nuisance than a fundamental measure to protect their bodies.
"We've spoken to motorcyclists and a key issue for them was to have safety messages delivered by a high profile and respected spokesman who's experience and expertise is held in high regard.
"That's why we've involved Mick Doohan as a safety ambassador to drive the message home.
"His involvement is helping to ensure motorcyclists sit up and take notice of the campaign's important safety messages," Mr Cook said.
The Director of Trauma Services and a senior consultant at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, Dr Bill Griggs said wearing the right gear could prevent or reduce many of the most common rider injuries.
"We see many injuries from motorcycle accidents. They are significant injuries that can have long term consequences.
"There's no question that protective clothing protects vital organs, neck and spine, lower and upper extremities over and above the level of normal clothing," Dr Griggs said.
The 'Gear Up' campaign airs on TV from 7 November and also involves metropolitan press, online (www.mac.sa.gov/gearup