Motorcyclists paying dearly for ignoring basic safety rules
Not one of the more than 50 motorcyclists killed in crashes across Jamaica since the start of the year was wearing protective headgear.
Senior Superintendent of Police Calvin Allen made this disclosure during the recent 'Bikers Roll Out' hosted by Red Strip at its Spanish Town Road headquarters, geared at encouraging motorcyclists to both drink and drive responsibly.
"We see road safety as an important element of everyday life. We all have a role to play in making our roads safer," Garth Williams, Red Stripe's sustainability manager, told the gathering of almost 100 motorcyclists. "With our Drink Right Bikers Roll Out, we're on a mission to educate as many motorcyclists as possible on the importance of road safety and driving responsibly, so they can safely return home to their families every day."
Kenute Hare, director of the Road Safety Unit in the Ministry Transport and Mining, used the occasion to explain that the amended Road Traffic Act will have harsher penalties for delinquent motorcyclists. However, he appealed to them to drive safer for a more personal reason.
"Helmets give you a fighting chance in the event of a crash. Give yourself that fighting chance to spend more time with your families," he urged.
The informative and entertaining programme featured presentations from key partners from the Traffic Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, the Road Safety Unit, and helmet supplier Superior Parts Limited.
Lucky bikers were also treated to giveaways of protective gear, including helmets, jackets, eyewear, and gift vouchers.
"We recognise that motorcycle ownership holds an integral space in the Jamaican culture. To this end, we have invested millions in top-of-the-line safety equipment tailored to the motorcycles we sell," said Derrick Johnson, Superior's chief executive officer and managing director.
"Coming on board this initiative was only natural, as we executed a similar programme, dubbed 'Ride For Life', in which helmets were distributed to gas stations islandwide, and along with Red Stripe, we implore motorcyclists to drink right, and drive right."