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Bikesafe

Discussion in 'Riding Tips' started by SV_Justin, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. SV_Justin

    SV_Justin

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    I don't know if anyone has ever heard of Bikesafe but it is a subsidised program set up by the government to promote safe riding. It invites motorcyclists, moped and scooter riders to participate in Rider Skills Days that offer assessment on present skills, and advice to help make their riding safer and more enjoyable.

    There are a large number of centres dotted around the UK, normally 1 or 2 in each region. I did a Rider Skills Assessment day back in February 2006. Normally the cost is around £30 which includes lunch, but I got the day paid for by my local council as I was classed as a 'vulnerable road user'. I was a little apprehensive about riding with the rozzers for a day, but I thought what the hell it’s not costing me anything and it'll probably be alright.

    It was a crisp frosty winters morning and I met at the Police site where other riders started to dribble in for the 8am start. After a brief check to see that lights were working and to check licenses we went inside for a cuppa and a quick presentation and description as to what we were going to do. The format was 2 sessions; one in a rural environment and one in an urban environment, riding 2 persons to 1 police officer, (One in front, one behind, and then swap over at different intervals). By about 10am we were well into our first session and the frost was starting to melt and the apprehension of having a Police Officer following you started to subside. After a while riding and a couple of stops I started to realise that these were normal guys riding around on bikes that just have a police sticker stuck on them. Whereas they don't condone speeding, they like you to get on with things and not poodle along at 28mph. Some good tips and advice and its time for lunch, the morning session is over. Everyone meets up for a bite to eat and you get a chance to talk to everyone and share advice, and before you know it, the afternoon session is scratching at the door. By the afternoon it started to warm up slightly and was turning into a beautiful day and we had the rural riding to go. This was the best part of the day for me.; lots of twisty national speed limit roads and a copper getting bigger in your mirror encouraging you to make progress. After a few more stops and changeovers, before I realised it was about 3pm and we started to head back. Back at the centre, we had a debrief, some last tips, a presentation and some quick photos.

    This was a truly cracking day and thoroughly enjoyable. Whereas I was a little unsure in the beginning, afterwards I would have been prepared to pay at least double what they charge. It’s a great day on the bike with some top riders sharing their tips and advice to effectively make you as safe a rider as possible, whilst having great fun at the same time.

    I would strongly recommend this to anyone with a bike, and i'm sure those who have already done Bikesafe will back me up.

    And plus, quite a few insurance companies offer a discount to riders who have attended Bikesafe.
     
  2. Good write up SVJ, i keep saying that i'm gonna do one of these but i never get round to it, thanks for reminding me, another good review for Bikesafe...... i've never heard one bad word said about it, and knowing ho wus bikers tend to enjoy amoan or two, especially about the boys in blue....IT MUST BE GOOD. :lol:
     
  3. I've just signed up for my IAM and start the Skill for Life course in March. This was £109 and covers a years membership, test and unlimited observational rideouts (the observer is a volunteer so it is good form to slip them a tenner a ride to cover their time, fuel and wear and tear).

    The other good thing is that the local group meets 2 miles from my house, has a monthly ride out and a monthly social evening.
     
  4. SV_Justin

    SV_Justin

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    I've done the IAM for my car and keep meaning to do it for my bike. There a normally loads of centres around and all the people there want to be there and so they are a great bunch of guys (and gals) and you generally have a good time. I can't think of anything negative to say about Bikesafe. The police as a whole I have plenty of bad words to say, and i'm actually taking the sussex traffic police to court. But Bikesafe gets a big high 5 from me. :D
     
  5. SteveH

    SteveH

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    Surprise, surprise my local law 'enforcement' authority don't offer a bikesafe course. Looks like I'll have to go further than my front doorstep :( Still some great roads to monster on the way ;)

    Will be looking into this though. Great write up Justin.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  6. I am an IAM member and did Bikesafe in Barnstaple North Devon on a Z750 (2004) . I did not realize it would take me an hour from Plymouth. Anyway, arrived slighly late 10mins. Got the brief and spilt into 2 students to one plod. The brief was 'Just ride how you normally ride and I will assess your riding. Whatever happens, there will be no tickets issued today' - PARTY ON DUDE :twisted:

    I set off and the front riding from Barnstaple to Bideford on the fast sweeping Atlantic Highway. I had to keep slowing down for the plod to catch up. After a while when he managed to catch me, we pulled over into a car park. He got off his beemer and walked across and he was shaking his finger. he said he was doing that so that the motorists following would think he was issuing me with a ticket. "Is that how you normally ride", he asked. "Pretty mutch", said I. He said "I have to admire your honesty and you certainly know how to handle a bike. I was scaping both panniers and getting now where near you under you decided to slow down. The speed limit is 60mph please try to keep it below 100mph" lol...... :D

    I passed....

    Happy days.
     
  7. Just to have a police chase with no concequences is worth the hour ride I think!
     
  8. SV_Justin

    SV_Justin

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    It's a very odd feeling seeing a Police bike in your mirror and then whe you pull over for him to say "yeah that was good but you could have quite safely gone faster"
     
  9. Have wanted to do the Bikesafe weekend for ages.

    To try a tester - they have a weekend - in London though (for the past 2 years).

    They've had a selection of manufactureres there & you get to try the others, while being assessed. The course is about 45 min, with a 10 min debrief.

    Which is great, unlike me who went on the R6, & just did not get on with it at all :lol: I remember stopping & the copper saying - you really didn't get on with that, did you ;)
     
  10. I have been keen to try it for aages.

    Its such a useful course - but once again Thames Valley dont offer it. Grrrrrrrr!!!!!
     

  11. Snap. I did the one day Ride Safe Back Safe assessment, and signed on for the IAM course which I am in the middle of now. Got my test date. I am doing this with SLAM Bikers who seem to be a great bunch. IMHO its about the best £100 ive spent for biking. I think my riding has improved a lot.
     
  12. Edski675

    Edski675 Administrator Staff Member

    How are you getting on with this? Just interested. I passed the IAM test a few years back, getting more training was a Mrs Edski condition for me getting back on a bike after a serious off. I think that I improved hugely but could probably do with a refresher TBH. As for Bikesfae they do do it here in West Mercia police area but there are so few dates that you have to book the previous year.
     
  13. I didn't end up starting when I'd planned. I now start on the 28th of this month. I have been to one of their meets and they seem a good bunch and have a lot of planned ride outs and events.
     
  14. I am booked in for mine this april as I havent ridden in a while I thought it was for the best. I may do my advances test too afterwards.
     
  15. Whether you get consequences or not depends what you do when they're following you! A 120mph wheelie whilst mooning might still land you in trouble!
     
  16. That sounds like a great days riding and well worth it. I was ment to do it last year but couldnt make it. I will try again this year.
     
  17. ive done the theory side just the practical ride out to do this sunday. I was told to fill the tank up
     
  18. I booked a Bikesafe course in Warwickshire today. £30.
     
  19. It cost me £48
     
  20. Ok today I did the rideout on the bike safe course. It was 1 instructor to 2 riders and you both took turns in leading whilst being assesed by the instructor. He is looking at your road position, speed, hazard perception, gear useage and control of bike. After riding for a few miles you will pull over and he will give you feedback on your riding and point out the good points and what you need to look for. Once the rideout was completed we had lunch and then watched a couple of short dvd's where a police rider talked through his riding and they pointed out potential hazzards those that you can see and those that you cant.

    In total we covered about 100 miles over the Cotswolds and for me it was the 1st time I have ridden with anyone on the Daytona. I found it interesting watching other peoples lines on the rd and through the corners.

    Personally I would recommend anyone who has not done the course on here to book one up now.

    Next up my advanced test which the instructor said I wasnt to far away from which I think is really good as I havent ridden on the road in years :D
     

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