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Motorcycle test overhaul

20 December 2010

Plans to trial a new, single, on-road motorcycle test have been published. Announcing the proposals, Road Safety Minister, Mike Penning, said: 

“I want to make sure that we have a test which prepares bikers properly for the road, so the motorcycle test review is a top priority for me.

"My goal has always been a single, on-road test, which is rigorous and reflects real-life conditions. By working with the motorcycle training industry and others we have identified a set of changes, which have the potential to deliver this."

The current motorcycle test was introduced in April 2009, and is carried out in two parts.

Module 1 is taken off the road and contains the specified manoeuvres element. It is designed to assess the rider’s ability to control their machine safely and includes avoidance and emergency stop exercises.

Module 2 is taken on the road. It includes an eyesight test and at least 30 minutes of road-riding.

Proposals for the new test include a new hazard avoidance manoeuvre, which could be carried out on the road. There is also a proposal to examine slow manoeuvres, such as the slalom, figure of eight and U turn, at training centres ahead of the main test.

The Department for Transport says the next step is to hold wider trials with test-level candidates in the new year. This process will be followed by public consultation on the proposed changes.

The DfT hopes a phased introduction of on-road testing will move to general adoption of the new test by the end of 2011 or early 2012. 

Read the motorcycle test review report from the DfT.

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