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SAM Weekly Newsletter – 29th March 2024

Editorial

It was cold and wet at times at last Saturday’s SAM Meet. This did not deter our members from riding out. The ingenuity of SAM members never ceases to amaze. Heated grips are helpful for warming the fronts of cold hands. One member had gone further, pulled an old pair of handlebar mitts from the loft. They were fur-lined and did the job of helping to ride very comfortably.

A SAM Observer had an update on a court case. Whilst out training an Associate, a car made a very dangerous overtake. It was all caught on the video camera used for training feedback. The driver pleaded guilty, received 6 points on his licence, was fined £702, plus a victim services surcharge of £281, plus court costs of £110. A total of £1,093. It really doesn’t pay to drive or ride without consideration of the conditions and other road users. With all the video technology built into transport now, you will get caught. Road users are becoming increasingly intolerant of poor riding and driving.

Applications for the SAM Spring Breakfast, taking place on the 13th April 2024, have now closed. Many thanks to all those who have filled in the online form. The list has now been sent to our sponsor, Supremecoat, to order the food for the event. This event will take place at their premises. See the SAM website for more details.

Applications for the role of Chief National Observer are now being reviewed. The SAM Observers have been asked for their opinions on the candidates. As always, the final decision will be made by the SAM Committee. They have responsibility for appointing all our charity’s office holders. Including your Editor!

It has been a bad week for motorcycle tyres. The Thursday group experienced a spectacular burst tyre on their ride out. Another member rode home with a very large nail in the tyre. Our grateful thanks to ‘Revs & Relics’ for their very rapid response in replacing the first tyre. The second event was very skillfully repaired by another SAM member. Learning to repair a puncture is an essential skill for any motorcyclist. Given the state of UK highways a puncture is one hazard very likely to happen at some point in your riding life.

We have a winner! The SAM Annual Photo Competition has now been independently judged and the winner will be announced at the SAM Annual General Meeting on the 8th April 2024. Make sure that you attend to learn about the exciting year ahead.

There is a consultation on implementing a default policy on motorcycles using bus lanes. All SAM members will know that it is much safer for motorcycles to use bus lanes. At present there is a variety of policies being implemented by local authorities in England and Wales. It would make more sense to have a consistent policy in all local authorities. The British Motorcyclists Federation has some very useful advice on completing the survey. You have until the 9th June 2024 to respond to the questionnaire and make comments.

The state of UK highways was in the news again this week. The UK Government announced an extra £38 million for highway authorities. A recent report from Asphalt Alliance Industry estimates that it will cost £16.3 billion simply to repair the existing highway infrastructure. The Police and Safer Roads organisations state that they cannot pursue the policy of #VisionZero without the state of the road network being improved. Between 2018-2022 there were 500 pothole-related deaths. The longer highway repairs are delayed the worse the situation will get.

There are a lot more, very interesting, items in this week’s newsletter. Happy reading.


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