As a motorcyclist I’m always interested in new safety improvements and was interested in a story all over the Radio 1 news this morning regarding a report that Air Bag Jackets should be made compulsory for all motorcyclists, http://news.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/hi/technology/newsid_7886000/7886427.stm
Now these are not new and I first heard about these in March of 2008 in Motorcycle News http://www.motorcyclenews.com/MCN/News/newsresults/videos/2008/march/mar1108dainesed-airbagsuit/?&R=EPI-99178
I have to take issue with the news story on the BBC because as usual it only tells half the story. They correctly state that motorcycles account for just 1% of road traffic and yet account for 20% of road fatalities, this is of course a very frightening statistic. And there the stats conveniently finish and are used as justification that like helmets, these jackets should be made compulsory.
What they don’t tell you is that of those 20% of fatalities, how many are caused by other road users who “didn’t see them!”. Surely more needs to be done to educate other road users to open their eyes and look properly. And then give more severe punishments to those that cause these deaths and injuries. Why does it have to be reported in a way the points the finger at the motorcyclist?
Of those 20% of deaths a very small number are the fault of the motorcyclist themselves so why should we have to fork out extra money? Don’t get me wrong, I’m very interested in the technology but it has to be my choice.