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Advanced rider training (motorcyclists)

Advanced rider training (motorcyclists)

Motorcyclists are vulnerable in traffic. A popular measure to reduce crash risk is motorcycle training. However, there is little evidence for the effectiveness of training. SWOV (Dutch Institute for Road Safety Research) therefore evaluated the ‘Risk’ advanced training course of the Royal Dutch Motorcyclists Association (KNMV). This one-day course teaches motorcyclists to recognize, analyse, and anticipate potential traffic hazards. Results from the two-year evaluation indicate that the ‘Risk’ training has a positive effect on safe riding behaviour and hazard perception of motorcyclists.

This long-term evaluation shows that the ‘Risk’ training has a positive effect on motorcyclists’ riding behaviour. If the training is to retain its effect, not only the design and curricu¬lum must be guaranteed, but also the didactic and substantive quality of (new) trainers.

Spotting the possibility of dangerous traffic situations - even before they occur - and avoiding them with adequate reactions, is still considered as the biggest contribution to road safety. Several provincial administrations in the Netherlands have shown their recognition by subsidizing the early perception training locally. In the meantime the KNMV and its instructors will continue to develop their programs.

Attachments 
What problem did you address/are you addressing? 
Results from the two-year evaluation indicate that the ‘Risk’ training has a positive effect on safe riding behaviour and hazard perception of motorcyclists in the short term (the first few months after training). Even in the long term (one year to eighteen months after training) ‘Risk’ trained motorcyclists showed safer traffic behaviour than a control group without ‘Risk’ training. This is a remarkable result, because until now no studies were found that scientifically establish positive effects of an advanced rider training course.
What are your objectives? 
Improve road safety for vulnerable road users such as powered-two wheelers
Evaluate effectiveness of the existing advanced rider training course of the Royal Dutch Motorcyclists Association (KNMV)
Measure effect of the training on observed riding behavour
Measure the effect of the training on self-assessed riding behaviour
Measure the effect of the training on hazard perception
Who was/is your target audience? 
How many people did you reach/have you reached? 
List the actions you carried/are carrying out 
Date 
Friday, 1 January, 2016
Name of action 

In order to execute the research, KNMV has developed an advanced rider training and measured the effects of this training, as will be described with all activities involved in the inititative:

Advanced rider training
The aim of an advanced rider training course is that it contributes to road safety. Advanced rider training is perceived as a way to speed up learning through experience. Although intuitively sound, this effect has not been demonstrated yet. Few motorcyclist courses have been evaluated thoroughly. Moreover, there are questions regarding the content of the training.

Few good and recent studies
A recent review compared 23 studies into the effects of motorcycle training. More than half of these studies were completed over twenty years ago; only three studies were carried out after the year 2000. The researchers concluded that most studies suffered from methodological weaknesses and therefore were unable to quantify the effectiveness of training on, for example, crashes.

Content of the training
The content of training also seems to explain the fact that many advanced rider courses for motorcyclists have little or no effect. Studies on advanced training for (young) drivers show that such courses do not always have a positive effect – and sometimes even have a negative effect – on road safety. For example, training aimed at acquiring complex (lower order) skills like how to recover
from a skid, seem to be counterproductive. A reason may be that drivers overestimate their skills after training and as a result take more risks in traffic. It is possible that motorcycle training unintentionally encourages dangerous riding, due to overconfidence without actually improving riding skills.

The programme of the evaluated ‘Risk’ training course:
The ‘Risk’ training of KNMV is both a theoretical and practical training. It aims at timely perception and recognition of traffic hazards and adaptation of riding behaviour to deal with these risks. In the training the – coherent – factors conspicuity, speed,
glance behaviour, risk perception and risk acceptance all play a role.
An important aim of the training is to prevent participants to feel safer riders after training, but to be aware of the (overt and covert) risks in traffic.
The training takes one day and has a maximum number of nine participants who are guided by three KNMV-certified ’advanced training’-instructors. The morning section is dedicated to risk
awareness followed by a motorcycle ride in traffic. After the theoretical part in the afternoon the motorcycle ride in traffic focuses on the choices and execution of riding behaviour.

Is there a plan for continuing these activities in the coming years? 
In the coming years the old enhancement trainings - with the emphasis on special skills for bike control on a closed circuit - will be more and more replaced by motorcycle trainings on public roads. That includes training of motorcyclists riding together as a group, which happens so often when they are touring during the weekends and in holidays.
How did you disseminate/are you disseminating results or how did you promote/are you promoting your initiative? 
Promotion has been done by the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment in the Netherlands, through the Dutch Institute for Road Safety Research and through KNMV's own network. Furthermore, pilots of the model have been implemented in e.g. Sweden (Swedish Motorcyclists Association) and in Australia. The KNMV is partnering up to promote this model of training KNMV is keen to share its knowledge on road safety and motorcycle trainings with other Member States since we firmly believe road safety is an issue without borders. For this reason, the KNMV has initiated the development of the European Motorcycle Safety Experience Center (EMSEC). The EMSEC will be established to improve road safety in Europe. EMSEC has the ambition to stimulate the quality of trainings in Europe and become the leading powered two-wheelers (PTWs) road safety hub in Europe by providing permanent education to motorcycle trainers across EU Member States. Road safety trainings play a pivotal role in improving the behavioral aspect of road safety and contribute to recognize, analyze and anticipate traffic hazards. The EMSEC is key contributor to the EU’s “Vision Zero” of moving as close as possible to zero fatalities in road transport by 2050. The activities of the EMSEC will be implemented along three objectives: 1. The EMSEC will provide permanent education through applying the train-the-trainer concept. This concept allows motorcycle trainers from recognized training institutes across EU Member States to follow courses at the EMSEC from beginner to advanced levels. By applying the train-the-trainer concept, knowledge will have a trickle-down effect in the EU Member States. Participants will be trained to educate motorcyclists in their own countries how to recognize, analyze and anticipate potential traffic hazards. The trainings focus on timely perception and recognition of traffic hazards and adaptation of riding behavior to deal with emerging risks. In the training, coherent factors such as conspicuity, speed, glance behavior, risk perception and risk acceptance play a role. The EMSEC will initially focus on the least-performing countries on road safety, according to the annual Road Safety Performance Index (PIN) reports. 2. A bi-annual powered two-wheelers safety conference will stimulate debate across Europe and create awareness around PTWs as vulnerable road users. This one-day conference has an European scope and includes workshops, debates and demonstration of pilot projects. The conference will be organized by the KNMV in cooperation with its partners at both national and European level. 3. Innovation and research are key to accelerate the transition towards safe European roads. The establishment of the EU Motor Safety Innovation Forum will create a permanent dialogue between research institutes, universities, manufacturers and regulators. The EMSEC will be a hotspot te develop, stimulate and apply state-of-the-art technologies that have the potential to improve road safety.
How did you evaluate/are you evaluating the success of your action? 
The evaluation study was carried out during the period 2012 – 2014. The study consisted of a pre-test and two post-tests with an experimental group (participants of the ‘Risk’ training course) and a control group (no training). The participants were randomly assigned to one of the two groups. No earlier scientific studies were found that indicated scientifically proven positive road safety effects of an advanced training course for motorcyclists.
Who carried/carries out the evaluation activities? 
External evaluation
Name of the external evaluator 
Institute for Road Safety Research (SWOV)
When did/will you carry out the evaluation? 
Before, after and continuous monitoring
How many groups did you evaluate/have you evaluated? 
Number of interventions groups 
1
Number of control groups 
1
Please list the indicators you use to measure success 
The study consisted of a pre-test and two post-tests with an experimental group (participants of the ‘Risk’ training course) and a control group (no training
The participants were randomly assigned to one of the two groups.
The motorcyclists for this study were recruited at the annual Motorcycle Fair in Utrecht in February 2012.
Of the 496 surveyed fair visitors, a total of 222 participants (137 experimental and 85 control condition) completed the short-term evaluation and 111 participants (77 experimental and 34 control condition) took part in the entire study
Please describe the evaluation tools you use (i.e. surveys, interviews, focus groups, etc.) 
The participants completed a questionnaire at each of the test intervals.
After each on-road ride the instructors completed a checklist about the riding behaviour of the participants. On a 0 to 10 rating scale they indicated the participants capabilities of skilful, smooth and safe riding
Hazard perception test (10 animated films)
External assessment (by KNMV instructors & external experts, i.e. motorcycle instructors of the Police Academy and A-licence examiners of the Dutch Driving Test Organisation CBR)