A Motorcycle Safety and Transport Policy Framework
Motorcycling is not just about safety. It is about job creation, employment, accessibility, access to work, traffic congestion reduction and environmental improvement among other areas. Therefore issues relating to motorcycling need to be built into the work of all Departments of State that have an interest in transport.
This is important to safety – in particular, vulnerability reduction – as a greater level of consistency will be created in overall government policy, as it relates to transport and motorcycles.
The issue becomes more acute as the UK moves towards Brexit and the strong need for all sectors of society and industry to make a positive contribution to, as the Prime Minister has said, making a success of Brexit. As a notable economic generator, the motorcycle industry has a not insignificant role to play in helping the UK develop its new role in the world.
As mentioned in Action 22 – To encourage policy making improvements to incorporate motorcycling into transport policy, the traditional government view of motorcycling has been one of safety, so therefore motorcycling as a whole has been regarded as a DfT Road Safety Division matter.
But as illustrated throughout this document, motorcycles and scooters make a contribution to many areas of society which are covered by a number of government departments. These include:
- Industrial activity, Job creation, employment, economic growth – BEIS/DWP/ DCLG/HMT/DfT
- Accessibility – DfT/DEFRA/DCLG
- Access to work – DFT/DEFRA/BEIS/DfE
- Traffic congestion reduction – DfT/DCLG
- Environmental improvement – DEFRA/OLEV/BEIS
- Sport and the sport economy – DCMS/BIS
Some of these areas arguably cross-over most government departments.
In order to realise the aims of this framework, a greater level of cross-departmental working will be required. Dialogue with individual departments will need to be developed.
Some positive work has already taken place on specific issues, such as DfT/DEFRA/DWP on Wheels to Work, DfT/BEIS/OLEV on ePTW matters and BEIS on manufacturing and economic matters. Positive discussion and notable progress has been made on those standalone issues where cross-departmental initiatives have been developed.
However, within many departments, overall interest in transport policy themes as they apply to their objectives – and in particular, the development of alternative transport – remains locked around the limitations of the walking, cycling and public transport paradigm.
In the same way that work to enrich DfT’s approach to motorcycles as part of overall transport solutions requires development, efforts need to be made with Ministers and officials from other departments to improve knowledge and discuss how motorcycle solutions can enrich their overall policy objectives. This will have a positive knock-on effect in road safety and vulnerability reduction terms, as policies towards motorcycles become more consistent and gaps in policy are plugged.
Brexit represents major new challenges for ‘UK PLC’. With a thriving and growing motorcycle industry and the UK being the home of one of the world’s largest motorcycle manufacturers (Triumph), it is clear that the UK motorcycle industry has much to contribute to the forthcoming Article 50 negotiations and also in future negotiations with new trading partners (a role of the MCIA prior to the inception of the EU).
Given the over £7billion contribution that the industry makes to the UK economy and the result of the EU referendum, the industry is ready to support efforts by Government to make a success of Brexit and seeks active dialogue with the new Department for International Trade and Department for Exiting the European Union – particularly in relation to the development of the new UK relationship with the EU (customs/trade/tariffs).
- A ‘compendium’ of departmental issues involving transport policy impacts will be developed.
- Links will be developed where appropriate across departments to explore relevant cross departmental transport issues.
- A common set of themes and policies will be encouraged, developed and implemented with industry and police support.
UPDATE – Action 23 – To Encourage Action from Different Government Departments to Allow the UK to Benefit from the Motorcycle Sector
The Compendium of departmental transport involvements has been completed
We have continued to develop relationships and dialogue with different Government departments, notably BEIS
Triumph is now a member of the UK Automotive Council
MCIA seeks membership of Automotive Council ‘sub groups’
The MCIA is developing a Brexit Strategy and has already held meetings with officials in DfT and BEIS
The UK motorcycle industry seeks active dialogue with DfIT and DEEU