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Legal Battle to keep Motor Cyclists Freedom to choose

The European Parliament’s Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) voted in Brussels yesterday on its report on the proposed regulation and on a raft of tabled amendments. About 35 IMCO members voted around 100 times on compromises, single amendments and blocs of amendments. We still haven’t got the breakdown of the voting, to see which amendments were accepted, but in the meantime;
In the view of IMCO, as from 2016 motorcycles will have to become cleaner and manufacturers must fit ABS, even for light motorcycles. As from 2014, measures to prevent power-train modifications (which are still to be developed) must be applied and users shall present their bikes for inspection when carrying out “substantial” modifications. The text is a little ambiguous, so for the UK there may be little change from the current MoT for certain changes.

Yesterday’s vote can be seen as a reference and recommendation for the final vote of the European Parliament, which is expected to be held by the beginning of 2012, probably March. We hope it is put back a little further, so that there is more time to organise a Euro wide demo. As soon as there is more info, I’ll let you know.

Before the vote was carried, IMCO chairman Malcolm Harbour made reference to an impact assessment which started on November 23rd, dealing with time-lines, emission limits, ABS and anti-tampering measures, and whose outcome is expected to influence Parliament’s final vote. This is why we still need to talk to all our MEPs as the process is changing all the time and those research results are in yet.

Remember that the challenge to the Commission about the way the proposal was drafted in the first place, is still to be answered, which is yet another angle of attack we are pursuing through the Ombudsman’s office.

With regard to power-train modifications [Article 18] IMCO adopted a compromise in line with the European Commission’s logic and propounded by Wim van de Camp’s office, with ‘delegated acts’ laying down measures for manufacturers to prevent subsequent modifications by the user that may have adverse effects on safety or the environment.

Additionally IMCO added a new article 18a which requires that users seek inspection and approval “by the competent authorities” in case of substantial power-train modifications. It may well be that the ‘competent authority’ in the UK will mean the MoT. “A modification is deemed to be substantial when it renders the original type approval obsolete” or when it harms safety or the environment. Interesting terminology and until we see what ‘delegated acts’ include, it is hard to comment.

Aline Delhaye, General Secretary of FEMA says: “This regulation contains many good parts FEMA is in line with, like durability requirements and improved access to repair and maintenance information for the user. But if the current text of article 18 is finally adopted, it will mean that all the usual changes motorcyclists make for riding comfort, fuel efficiency, or simply to suit their riding style, will be illegal or will have to be checked and approved. This has not been a problem so far and there is no reason why it should become a problem tomorrow. FEMA will certainly keep on working on this regulation.”

Sign the petition now

Further to rotund’s post, this is the OFFICIAL petition from Riders are Voters with correct link. The previous ones were inaccurate. Sorry for the aggro, but could you please sign this one, it takes a minute and it’s important. Thank you. (If you have already managed to sign the same petition with the incorrect link, don’t sign this one)

Against EU Member States Introducing Mandatory High Visibility Clothing For Motorcyclists – e-petiti the undersigned urge the British Government to put pressure on the European Commission to discipline any member state that imposes clothing standards on motorcycle riders. We view any such requirement as an expression of prejudice against motorcyclists and a barrier to the free movement of people.. 

There some changes to the current bike test laws.
On 13th January 2013 the govenment will be introducing new rules for the motorcycle test. The A2 licence as it called, (the 125cc test), will be changing and will limit persons who pass the test to ride scooters no larger than 125cc.
Anyone who wants to ride a bigger scooter will have to pass the test on a motorcycle no smaller than 395cc.
Spoke to Norman of Passmasters (tel 020 8841 5506) which are based in Northolt & said it’s coming in & basically you got A YEAR to get it done
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