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N/A | National France reverses compulsory reflective clothing law

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by robsalvv, Dec 16, 2012.

  1. http://ukfrancebikers.com/2012/12/02/france-compulsory-reflective-clothing-suspended/

    France: compulsory reflective clothing suspended

    December 2, 2012
    [​IMG]Good news for riders in France: the new French Interior Minister, Manuel Valls, has decided to suspend the forthcoming obligation for all riders (whether residents or visitors) to wear at least 150cm2 of reflective clothing between the waist and the shoulders. Bikers who were caught not wearing the appropriate reflective clothing from 1st January 2013 would have been liable to a 68 euros fine payable on the spot and two points taken off their licence.

    The battle has been very long for the bikers to achieve such a good result. Despite national demonstrations gathering over 100,000 bikers and bringing the whole country to a complete stop, the previous Interior Minister, Claude Guéant, refused to abandon the proposals. Guéant initially proposed the compulsory wear of reflective jackets and, with the enormous pressure he was put under by thousands of angry bikers who kept blocking the roads all over the country, he decided to back off and restrict the reflective clothing to only 150cm2

    Manuel Valls, French Interior Minister

    between the waist and the shoulders. But this was not good enough – the bikers demanded full scrapping of the proposals, which Guéant refused to accept. Manuel Valls (right), Guéant’s successor following the recent elections, seems to be more reasonable and has now accepted to listen to the bikers’ concerns and suspended his predecessor’s proposals. Unfortunately, suspend does not mean scrap – the proposals will be reviewed in detail before Valls may decide to scrap them once for good.
    This is one of the most laughable and absurd pieces of legislation we have ever heard of because a) reflective clothing is precisely not reflective during day light, b) it is already compulsory to ride with headlights turned on which makes riders clearly visible and c) those who ride machines of up to 125cc would have been exempt from wearing reflective clothing on the grounds that they don’t ride a powerful enough bike to be considered dangerous on the roads! Let’s not forget that a very large number of motorcyclists who ride a moped or a 125cc bike are precisely those who don’t hold a full motorcycle licence and have only attended at the very most a one-off 7 hour training course all together. But, as usual, bikers who ride larger machines are always the ones who cause most concern to the government because they have been much better trained than every other biker!

    Whilst it makes perfect sense to educate bikers to be more visible on the roads to minimise the risk of collisions resulting from car drivers not seeing them, it also makes sense to educate car drivers, including taxi drivers, to share the roads with bikers and make them realise that they don’t own the roads. Why are car drivers not forced to apply a yellow sticker at the back (and front) of their vehicle to make it more visible? Why are riders and drivers not treated equally on the roads and, more importantly, why are bikers being constantly treated as irresponsible and rogue citizens? Statistics show that the vast majority of road accidents involving motorcyclists are caused by car drivers not paying attention to what’s around them, including the presence of bikers. So instead of imposing radical and useless measures on the bikers and treat them like children, governments had better address road related issues by implementing training and safety awareness sessions for all, not always and constantly victimise the bikers.

    Whilst bikers in France are delighted to hear the good news, the battle is not yet totally over. Manuel Valls has yet to review and consider his predecessor’s proposals in detail before he makes his final decision, which will hopefully be the full scrapping of these proposals. Meanwhile, the French Federation of Angry Bikers – FFMC (Fédération Française des Motards en Colère) continues to put the government under pressure to achieve the desired full scrapping of the proposals. Bikers prefer to be given the option of wearing reflective clothing and not be told to do so.

    For those of you who understand French, here is a short video of Manuel Valls announcing the suspension of compulsory reflective clothing pending full critical review of the proposals and France Wolf of the FFMC who expresses her gratitude for Valls’s latest decision.

    = = = = =

    • Like Like x 2
  2. It's a shame they didn't implement the law for a few months at least. It would've provided some modern statistics to see if there was a drop in SMIDSY's or not.
  3. I doubt if a cople of months fatalities would be statistically significant.
  4. Who knows? It would at least be a modern statistical study of the effectiveness of high-vis wouldn't it? Then maybe the whole topic could be put to bed once and for all. As far as I know, the only current evidence being used to argue in favour stems from the HURT report of the 1980's.
  5. aha ... a case of Frenchies farting successfully in the general direction of the legislators whose fathers smelt of elderberries :rofl:

    Power to the people :beer:
  6. Excellent work by the French bikers, France has got to be one of the last democracies out there, or at least one of the last countries where people still protest properly and the government pays attention.

  7. Unless 100s of riders died with fluro on then it wouldnt make a difference statistically.

    The only way that would happen was because fluro was significantly more dangerous. If it was significantly more dangerous, this probably would be already known. Its just not that much more dangerous, nor is it that much safer. I own both and dont have anything that says it is one way or the other. It really doesnt do much at all.

    Which is why it is good that it is overturned because we can get on with things that make the roads safer rather than things just to make less people ride bikes.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Given the historical precedent, if I was a legislator faced with a large number of angry Frenchmen, I'd bloody take notice too :D.
  9. The government didn't pay attention. I understand that there was a change of government and they paid attention.
  10. Noted. I'd also despise being told what to wear
  11. Just thinking what offensive emblem I could make out of reflective tape if I was forced... maybe something like grue's avatar...
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Random factoid: normalised by travel distance, it is safer to ride a motorcycle than ride a bicycle in Paris.
  13. [​IMG]

    offensive french image
  14. No, if you got say, a 50% reduction in SMIDSYs due to everyone wearing Hi-Vis that would be significant. You don't need hundreds of people to die. The results of the HURT report was that there is evidence that hi-vis increases safety, and that's what the advocates use. Thus, we need a new study :)
  15. HURT talked about conspicuity in the context of cruisers, black or no gear and no headlight. It was also a leap in logic based on drivers not seeing bikes which we now understand is due to a bunch of reasons.
  16. IMHO visibility is better improved by.riders wearing all different coloured helmets and clothes. Think all the random colours people wear at the snow. If everyone wears the same stuff it doesn't help, even if the stuff is hi vis.

    <insert joke about the French having to wear 150cm of white flag instead>
  17. Denholm, just to show how complex this issue is, Multicoloured clothing or bikes could actually make things worse. If one or more of the colours blends with a similar colour in the background, this will break up the outline and reduce conspicuity as a result - probably partially camouflage the bike too. Confusing isn't it.