Bikers are ignoring important safety advice and putting themselves and their passengers at risk of injury.
A study of more than 5,000 motorcyclists has found that many are unaware of key points in The Highway Code, including protective clothing recommendations and the wearing of helmets by all passengers.
The research, from insurer Carole Nash, quizzed over 5,000 regular motorcycle riders on their Highway Code knowledge, as well as how well they care for any protective equipment.
It found that one in 20 are currently wearing a helmet that is over 10 years old, and 10 per cent admit to using second-hand headgear, despite experts advising riders replace it every three to five years.
A huge two-thirds don’t refer to SHARP, the helmet safety scheme from the Department for Transport, for the safety rating before buying their motorcycle helmet.
While, one in ten (10 per cent) have continued to use their helmet after causing damage to it, even though experts advise this can reduce the protection offered to the rider.
Almost 17 per cent even admitted to riding without a helmet, increasing the risk of suffering a traumatic brain injury – one of the most common injuries in motorcycle accidents.
When quizzed on certain points of The Highway Code that are specific to motorcyclists, many riders were unaware of all the regulations and recommendations.
Mark Copper, head of product at Carole Nash, said:
“Motorcyclists need to be fully aware of The Highway Code and the regulations to protect them.
“It is also important that riders adhere to the rules, particularly when it comes to their helmet, as the risk of a head injury when wearing a safe, regulated helmet falls by roughly 70 per cent.
“It’s worth all bikers refreshing their knowledge of The Highway Code, replacing their helmet every three to five years – or after an accident – and checking its SHARP safety rating to ensure we’re all as safe as possible.”