Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Accident Waiting to Happen; One Scooter Rider a Day Is Killed or Hurt

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Accident Waiting to Happen; One Scooter Rider a Day Is Killed or Hurt

Article excerpt


A SCOOTER rider is killed or seriously hurt in London every day, figures revealed today.

Bikes with engines under 125ccs - mostly scooters and mopeds - account for almost half of all motorcycle crashes in the city, the Transport for London statistics show.

A total of 367 of the 845 motorcyclists killed or seriously injured on London's roads last year were riders of the smaller machines.

Fourteen of the 44 killed were on scooters or mopeds.

The boroughs with the highest number of accidents were Westminster with 111 and Lambeth with 87.

Separate Department for Transport figures show that 5,238 riders of mopeds - machines with engines under 50ccs - were involved in crashes across Britain in 2004, compared with 2,500 in 1998. Ninety per cent of riders were injured or killed.

Today, safety experts urged the police to get tougher on dangerous riders and car drivers to reduce the accident toll and called for more road safety education in schools.

Ruth Bridger of the AA Motoring Trust said: "We are very worried about the number of young riders who take to scooters and mopeds and end up getting hurt or killed.

"Scooters are a very attractive way of getting around but they can also be very dangerous. The answer is more education.

"We also want to see more enforcement by police. If they stopped those riding dangerously or without proper safety clothing more frequently, it could make a big difference."

Jo Stagg of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents said: "Riders of smaller machines often do not think they are as dangerous as larger ones.

Unfortunately, they can be - all riders should have extra training."

But Craig Carey-Clinch of the Motor Cycle Industry Association said the statistics reflected the popularity of scooters, especially since the introduction of the [pounds sterling]8 congestion charge, from which motorcycles are exempt.

He said that nationally the number of fatal motorcycle accidents in the first six months of last year was 10 per cent down on 2004 and serious accidents down 13 per cent. …

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