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pity its not our prime minister saying this

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' at netrider.net.au started by twistngo, Feb 26, 2010.

  1. Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said that there will be a review of the reformed motorcycle test after a huge drop in candidate numbers and pass rates.

    There has been a staggering 62% decrease in the number of trainee riders taking tests since the new testing system was introduced in 2009 whilst the overall pass rate has fallen by 58% in the same period.

    In Prime Minister’s Questions yesterday, Anne Main, Conservative MP for St Albans, asked the Gordon Brown what course of action the government was intending to take to address the sharp increase in test failures and falling candidate numbers.In response, the Prime Minister said: “I will ask the Transport Minister to look into this matter. It is important that we have a strong motorcycling industry in this country .”

  2. Our motorcycle tests aren't hard to begin with..Are you suggesting they be made easier?
  3. If you look at the facts, as per the link above, the number of trainees taking tests, can be attributed to the fact that they have not opened enough of there new training centres, which means some people need to travel 1, 2 or more hours to a training centre. For example, if you lived in sydney, and the nearest training centre was in newcastle, there would also be a significant drop in numbers, due to the distance you need to travel.

    To quote from the link "Critics have also hit out at aspects of the test itself, with particular criticism on a “swerve” manoeuvre, which requires riders to perform an evasive manoeuvre at a speed of 50kph (31mph). Whilst the test’s supporters claim that the element is required to prepare new motorcycles for the road, opponents claim that the test does not properly reflect real road conditions and that no concession is made for weather conditions."
    How do opponents claim that the swerve is not reflecting real world situation, how many times, on the road, do you have to swerve to miss something, i.e. someone opens a car door, animal walks on the road, potholes , e.t.c. This should remain as an integral part of there testing.

    This link http://www.dsa.gov.uk/Category.asp?cat=405 gives a brief description as to how the tests are done. They have a two part test, 1st is on the course, 2nd part is actual road riding. Unlike the test in NSW for example, which is not part of the licensing test, it appears that you can fail the road test component, if you are unable to do hill starts, e.t.c.

    This link http://www.dsa.gov.uk/Documents/MPTC/2009/dsa_motorcycle_manoeuvre_diagram_mptc.pdf is a diagram of the test course for the 1st component.
  4. Which seems reasonable; afterall, the same expectations are there in our car license tests.
  5. OMG. I agree with Grange!

    The real problem with the UK test is that they changed the test process so that it can only be done at certain establishments. This ruled out a lot of the existing venues. Some people have more than 1-2hrs to travel too.
  6. I don't need to look at the link as I was replying the post by the OP which states that the pass rate has fallen. Brown is talking about a new testing system not distance to testing locations.

    Yes UK tests are much more stringent than AU tests.
  7. The figures are 62% decrease in trainees taking the test, and overall 58% decrease in pass rate. From reading the UK magazines, there seems to be two reasons for that: too few venues, which results in very long waiting lists and many people abandoning their intention to get their license; and aspects of the test that are literally scaring people off.
    THere is comment around that there has been a very large increase in the number of trainees both crashing and injuring themselves during training and testing. Most opinion is laying the blame for this on the new swerve test, which is much more severe than before, and conducted rigidly regardless of weather conditions.
    More stringent graduated licensing conditions are also being blamed for turning more people off riding. The push for this is coming from demands for yhe UK to conform EU road safety standards ( which have a heavy anti-bike bias). (They have to start on 125cc over there, and stay on small capacity much longer.)
    But their bike lobby is pretty effective. I sometimes think that we forget that in other countries the public are not as whipped and gullible as we are.
  8. There's a good article here by an instructor taking the test and giving his opinion on it.
  9. ResmeN, my comment was not directed at you, it was based on looking at the link as described.
    I have commented on the riding centres, only as there was genuine figures showing a reason for the falling rate of trainees.
    I didn't comment on the percentage of failure rates , as I don't know what the test consisted of before, so unable to compare.
    I made mention of the swerve test, and gave examples of why that component should stay. Is it to hard, that component, some will say yes, others no....
  10. Same as we should have :)
  11. Ideally; no-one will fail the test, no matter how difficult it is. Why do I say this? Because by the time someone is doing the actual test, they should have been taught everything required to pass it.

    I'm happy enough to support high standards, but there must be high standards of training to support them.
  12. Is the lack of candidates also down to the fact that the UK has just had possibly the crappiest winter for decades?

    The UK has two advantages over Australia. Firstly, a very lucrative native bike industry which was one of the few industrial success stories the country could boast for many years.

    Secondly, a bike lobby, in the forms of MAG, the BMF and the FEM, that has numbers, contacts and only indulges once a decade or so in the kind of petty and destructive antics I see here constantly. It's not nationally fragmented either.
  13. I recently got back from the uk and was impressed with the number of bikes being ridden in London, whilst I was walking on a snow-covered footpath! But yes, it surely must have some effect.

    As an aside, but related to training, I noted that many riders dangled the inside leg when cornering. Is this an insurance against loosing the back end due to ice (ie: to perform a motocross style dab of the foot), or is it just sloppy technique?
  14. Interesting...
    To me it's sounds like the test is just a bit too hard for novices if an experienced rider & instructor found it taxing.
    I guess there's a fine line between making it too easy and being just that little bit too hard...
  15. I'm not convinced anywhere has a higher proportion of year-round riders than the UK, in spite of crappy weather conditions. Makes me (a bit) proud to be a Pom.

    The inside leg dangling is almost certainly due to the slippery conditions and not poor technique. British riders might not indulge the in interminable debates on technical correctness that I see in Australia (didn't used to anyway) but the majority are pretty good. The idea of the inside foot being down is that, even if you can't save the bike, your leg won't be under it. At low speed, it's even possible to simply step off and remain on your feet ready to retrieve your bike.
  16. I'd guess it's because of the crappy weather - you'd get the bike out of the garage twice a year if you waited for a sunny day!

    Thanks for explaining the leg thing. I thought there must be something to it, given almost every rider was at it.