Survey of Novice Motorcycle Riders and Their Riding Experience Before Licensing

Liz de Rome, Rebecca Ivers, Narelle Haworth, Stephane Heritier, Michael Fitzharris, Wei Du

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    Graduated licensing schemes have been found to reduce the crash risk of young novice drivers, but there is less evidence of their success with novice motorcycle riders. This study examined the riding experience of a sample of Australian learner-riders to establish the extent and variety of their riding practice during the learner stage. Riders completed an anonymous questionnaire at a compulsory rider-training course for the licensing test. The majority of participants were male (81%) with an average age of 33 years. They worked full time (81%), held an unrestricted driver's license (81%), and owned the motorcycle that they rode (79%). These riders had held their learner's license for an average of 6 months. On average, they rode 6.4 h/week. By the time they attempted the rider-licensing test, they had ridden a total of 101 h. Their total hours of on-road practice were comparable to those of learner-drivers at the same stage of licensing, but they had less experience in adverse or challenging road conditions. A substantial proportion had little or no experience of riding in the rain (57%), at night (36%), in heavy traffic (22%), on winding rural roads (52%), or on high-speed roads (51%). These findings highlight the differences in the learning processes between unsupervised novice motorcycle riders and supervised novice drivers. Further research is necessary to clarify whether specifying the conditions under which riders should practice during the graduated licensing process would likely reduce or increase their crash risk.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)75-81
    Number of pages7
    Issue number2194
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010


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