‘To save biker lives, give them an airbag’
Wearing airbag vests could prevent 10% of road deaths and many more serious injuries among motorcyclists. The French road safety organization, Sécurité Routière, is launching a campaign in this Advent to raise awareness of these airbags for motorcycles.
“Give an airbag to your loved ones” to protect them and save them from death or serious injury in the event of an accident, says the essence of this advertising campaign presented by Emmanuel Barbe, the inter-ministerial delegate for road safety during a press conference in Paris.
The airbag is integrated into a jacket of the rider and inflates automatically in one or two tenths of a second as soon as the short thread connecting it to the motorcycle breaks, which is the case when the rider falls in an accident.
Protection is crucial
According to Sécurité Routière, it is 22 times more likely bikers are killed on the road than motorists, while bikers represent less than 2% of traffic. The widespread use of airbags among bikers could prevent more than 10% of deaths and even more serious injuries.
“It has to become a habit like a seat belt: before riding a motorcycle, you have to put on an airbag”, says Barbe. An airbag, protecting the upper body, from the cervical to the abdomen, currently costs 400 euro.
“As part of this campaign, which will last until the end of December, nine producers of these vests will give a price reduction of around 20%”, Barbe added. “It’s a good time to buy an airbag and especially convince bikers to use such safety equipment.
However, it will not be made mandatory”, he stressed. “We just want this product to be better known in general and that it is used by all motorcycle professionals.” Wearing this vest makes you cautious, because it reminds you that on a motorcycle you are more vulnerable. This has been observed among all those who use it.”
“In Fontainebleau (Seine-et-Marne region) the police reported about 50 airbag activations over the year. The the number of serious injuries was reduced by a factor of five”, he concludes.