The Queensland Government has launched a Motorcycle Safety Awareness campaign, aimed at cutting down on the frightening statistics of one motorcyclist being killed and 15 being injured each week on Queensland's roads. Of particular interest are two areas; the growth of older riders among the statistics, and the prevalence of speed and rider-fault in accidents. The Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Mr Paul Lucas, stated, "Between 1992 to 2005 the number of mature motorbike riders aged 40 years or over, killed or hospitalised as a result of road crashes in Queensland, has increased from 74 riders (or 13.4%) during 1992 to 312 riders (or 34.9%) during 2005." "Many of these returning riders got their licence years before and after doing well financially have splurged on a high-powered road bike they aren't equipped to ride." I'm dubious about that last statement because in order for an older rider to go out and buy a high-powered bike, he/she would have had to have maintained a motorcycle license from an earlier time, and therefore may well have been intermittently riding as well. Under normal circumstances an older rider, even one coming back to bikes after a mid-life break, would have to go through the Learner/Restricted path. (I didn't myself, but only by good luck of having lived in Canberra when I stopped riding, and the Territory having a multi-discipline license scheme there.) The second set of stats of interest will draw howls of protest from many, but need to be considered anyway. Mr Lucas said, "During 2006, police identified that the rider was speeding in 40% of fatal crashes involving motorbike riders. "And in 81% of the 64 fatal crashes involving motorbikes in 2005, the reporting police officer considered the motorbike rider most at fault," Mr Lucas said. "It's individual riders who can make the most difference." We have a well-documented and almost Pavlovian 'victim' mentality when it comes to motorcycle accidents, but we are, in fact, our own worst enemies. Remember, in the context of the real world, he is not talking only about people doing 230kph on the open road and meeting some hazard, but perhaps doing 90 in a 60 zone and meeting some hazard at that speed.