Special Motorcycle Barrier Tested

Bike Safety Measures Fitted In County Durham


A new roadside crash barrier designed to reduce the amount of motorcyclist deaths is to be tested in County Durham.

The new style barrier is being installed by engineers from Durham County Council on the A689 road, near the entrance to Killhope Lead Museum in upper Weardale.

While cars have benefited from safety features such as airbags and crumple zones in recent times, motorcyclists have continued to form a significant number of the road casualties. Typical roadside barriers can be deadly for motorcycle riders, while they are designed to retain cars, vans and trucks.

Once the new barrier has been tested in Killhope, more will be installed around the country.

"Durham County Council is exploring whether special pads or other protection could be fixed to road signs and lampposts in vulnerable positions, so that if a motorcyclist does collide with one of them the impact would be reduced," said a Durham Police spokesman.

"The council has also taken the unusual step of adding extra bauxite to road paint to improve the grip of yellow and white lines, as well as looking at ways of making drain covers and manholes less slippery," he added.

Copyright © Press Association 2009

Specialist motorcycle accident lawyer Stephen Nye of law firm Irwin Mitchell commented: "This innovation being trialled by Durham County Council is a very welcome development. I know from my experience of representing motorbike accident victims, that often most injuries are sustained by impacts with the road surface and objects at the side of the road.

“It is hoped that the new mesh barrier will prove successful on the A689, so that it can then be used at other locations throughout the country, particularly those with poor records in respect of motorbike accidents. As the system is widely used in Europe, there appears no reason why the system should not work. Any advances in respect of road safety are to be welcomed."

If you have been involved in an accident on a motorcycle, find out about a possible motorcycle accident claim.