Bikes to be banned from new 'protection zones'?

The Telegraph posted an interesting article which caught our eye at the end of last week, suggesting that the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has called for motorbikes to be banned from certain areas of the UK in a report to the House of Commons Transport Select Committee. Quotes...

The ACPO submission said: "There is a need for radical thinking in respect of motorcycles, including consideration of engine capability and the creation of protection zones where all motorcycles other than those specifically permitted, would be prohibited." This apparent call for power restrictions on motorcycles and their prohibition in some areas of the country flies in the face of substantial independent evidence that there is no correlation between a motorcycle's power output and its likelihood of being involved in an accident.

Another strange claim by ACPO to the committee is that motorcycling presents a problem of "Vehicle Excise Duty evasion on a massive scale." This appears to be based on a DVLA report published at the beginning of this year suggesting that almost 40 per cent of motorcycles are untaxed, even though an apology was later issued by the Commons public accounts committee when it was discovered the figures were wrong, and the true number was only slightly greater for motorcycles than cars, at about six per cent. In its submission, ACPO used the 40 per cent figure to suggest that motorcycles should be fitted with electronic chips to allow automatic vehicle identification.

A further inaccuracy presented to the committee by ACPO is that, "Production machines are readily available for use on our roads with top speeds in excess of 200 miles per hour." In fact there are no production bikes capable of more than 200mph, even without the motorcycle industry's voluntary 186mph speed limitation.

Bizarre claims by the ACPO that put into question their suitability as a source for a Parliamentary committee, and road safety in general. Sounds like someone just doesn't like bikers...