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MAG Awards for Motorcycle Awareness Videos - July 27th 2006

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    The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG UK) announces its summer media awards for motorcycle safety awareness videos. The categories range from the Golden "Oscars" to the "Raspberry" Award.

    The Raspberry Award goes to the latest Transport for London (TfL) video and campaign "The Day You Went To Work" or as stated by the narrator "The legs you'll never use again".

    The TfL campaign launched at the start of Ride to Work week is clearly intended to gratuitously shock and receives its Raspberry award due to its unintelligent message that bikes are bad and dangerous.

    Although the campaign claims to be aimed at all road users the video clearly puts the blame on the rider to watch out for car drivers without offering any constructive advice on how to avoid accidents to motorcyclists or other road users.

    MAG's opinion is that the video will discourage people from taking up motorcycling - after all, who would engage in an activity whereby, even when you are doing nothing wrong, you run a severe risk of being maimed due to the thoughtless actions of car drivers.

    The TfL campaign also receives an award for the worst background. Shooting themselves in the foot the road used for filming clearly shows that the surface is broken up and full of pot holes. Perhaps TfL should have spent its film budget on repairing the road and moved the lamppost the rider crashes into, away from the kerb.

    MAGs Director of Public Affairs says, "Compared to other recently released motorcycle awareness videos the promised TfL consultation with rider representatives through the London Motorcycle Working Group, has been non existent and certainly non effectual. TfL has wasted money and an opportunity to make a difference they should hang their heads in shame."

    The Golden "Oscar" Award goes to the Department for Transport and the Think Campaign for their two videos "The Perfect Day" and their recent "THINK! Take Longer to Look for Bikes".

    Both videos show what can be achieved with the right message to riders and drivers through a high level of consultation, intelligence and research.

    The 'Perfect Day' aimed at leisure riders takes the viewer through a motorcycle ride in a rural setting and engages the rider with education on what to be wary of when on the road.

    The 'Take Longer to Look for Bikes' is aimed at the urban rider and specifically targets car drivers to look out and see motorcyclists. This is a simple but important message for drivers and is a reflection of the high percentage of motorcycle accidents occurring at junctions, where car drivers violate motorcyclists' right of way.

    Following close behind, is the Motorcycle Industries (MCIA) DVD "A Street a Track an Open Road". Introduced by Suzi Perry and featuring motorcycle racers Chris Walker and James Toseland, the DVD follows the exploits of three riders as they try out their riding skills on a variety of bikes in different environments. A serious message delivered to riders in an entertaining and constructive manner.

    Last but not least is a new interactive DVD released this weekend "Great Roads, Great Rides" by the Highways Agency which engages the viewer on machine control; basic maintenance checks; what kit to wear; how to read and negotiate the road; how to ride safely with a group, and what to do if you're first on the scene of a crash. Although the chapter promoting speed cameras and unmarked police cars is out of place and spoils an otherwise excellent DVD.