Police launch motorbike safety campaign

Road policing officers will be patrolling key roads
Road policing officers will be patrolling key roads

Road policing officers will be out on patrol across a number of main arterial routes in the region as part of a national motorcycle safety initiative.

In support of the Scottish Government’s Live Fast Die Old campaign, Police Scotland’s Divisional and Trunk Roads Policing Units in the Lothians and Scottish Borders will have a high visibility presence on various roads including the A1, A7, A68, A71, A697, A701, A702, A703, A6094 and A6105.

The purpose of the activity, which begins today (Wednesday), is to monitor for dangerous, reckless and illegal driving and riding and take appropriate action whenever such offences are detected.

In addition, officers will be looking to engage with motorcycle users to provide useful information and guidance on how they can safeguard themselves when travelling on the roads network.

Recent statistics show that motorbike fatalities as a result of collisions have risen in the last year and with the beginning of Spring, it is anticipated that larger numbers of motorcyclists will be out on the roads in the coming weeks and month.

Transport Scotland has also produced figures showing that riders currently make up only one per cent of the country’s traffic, but account for 15 per cent of fatalities.

Sergeant Roger Park of Police Scotland Trunk Road Patrol Group, said: “Operation Zenith is a campaign aimed directly at motorcycle safety.

“Motorcycling can be very enjoyable and for many it is an essential way to travel, however riding these vehicles has to be kept within sensible bounds.

“We all have a part to play, however, and I would encourage all motorists and members of the public alike to be mindful of the increased levels on motorcycles that will be on our roads throughout the spring and summer months.

“In addition, we also see a significant increase in the number of slow moving campervans and caravans, often driven by tourists, who can unfamiliar with the area or indeed with driving on the left side of the road. Motorcycles can be difficult to see and are often hidden or obscured from view by street furniture, areas vegetation and other vehicles.

“Throughout the course of the campaign, Road Policing Officers, using both marked and unmarked police vehicles assisted by Safety Camera Unit personnel will be engaging with motorists on identified routes in a concerted effort to reduce the number of motorcycle casualties on our roads.

“We will utilise all means at our disposal to detect and deter inappropriate and anti-social riding and driving and will be robust with motorcyclists as well as drivers of other vehicles who demonstrate a total disregard for road safety, placing themselves and others at risk.”