AN INCREASING number of people aged 40-44 are being injured on scooters or small motorbikes, latest figures reveal.
According to data analysed by the Sussex Safer Roads Partnership, the first six months of this year have seen more riders of small motorcycles and scooters (powered two-wheelers or PTWs) injured than in the same period in 2010.
Of those injured, the group that has risen the fastest in comparison with last year are 40 to 44-year-olds riding machines between 50cc and 125cc.
This is closely followed by a rise in the number of people injured who are aged between 25 and 29 and riding the same sized machines.
The partnership says it is possible some of this increase is due to individuals using PTWs as an alternative means of transport because of the current financial climate in the UK.
Sgt Carl Knapp, of Sussex Police’s road policing unit, said many people thought of injuries sustained by riders of smaller motorcycles and scooters as something predominantly experienced by younger people.
However, the partnership’s latest research shows serious injuries are becoming increasingly common among those in older age groups.
“Before anyone takes to the road on a smaller motorcycle or scooter for the first time, they need to undertake at least compulsory basic training,” Sgt Knapp said. “This is designed to be one link in the chain of learning to ride a motorcycle.
“However, I would strongly recommend that further training is undertaken to ensure new riders – or those who haven’t been on the road in a while – stay as safe as possible.
“It is important that riders develop beyond compulsory basic training and look to achieving their motorcycle test through further training.”
In Sussex, the BikeSafe course is offered to motorcyclists wishing to develop, or brush up on, their skills.
Details of the course and how to enrol can be found online at www.bikesafe.co.uk