NSW Road Rule Changes Effective Friday 1 July 2016

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Lobbying and advocacy work by the Motorcycle Council of NSW in conjunction with the Australian Motorcycle Council has borne fruit with the introduction of road rule
changes in NSW effective from Friday 1 July 2016.

The changes that take effect are;

Rule 270 – A motorcycle rider who is pushing a motorcycle does not have to wear a
helmet, if the engine is not running and it is safe to do so.

Rule 271(1A) (a) – A motorcycle rider may stand on the footrests of a motorcycle
provided it is safe to do so, for example to help them maintain control on roads with
potholes or loose gravel.

Rule 271(1A) (b) – A motorcycle rider may remove a foot from the footrest when it is
safe to do so, for example to stretch.

These changes brought about by the work of the MCC and AMC will benefit riders across the state so a big thank you to Guy Stanford and Christopher Burns for their efforts in bringing
about these changes. It just shows what can be achieved through sensible conversations. Let’s now hope that the other States and Territories follow…

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1 Comment

  1. Rob Mitchell

    In 2009 I asked some questions about the group of silly and dangerous laws these were part of. I was offended by the arrogance and ignorance of the answers given by Mr Greg Deimos, Senior Manager/Project Director, National Transport Commission.

    Following are my questions and there answers. Particularly note the last sentence in his reply to question 1. Hands up everyone how works their clutch with their foot????

    RTA Preamble/
    The NSW Police Force will enforce the law as it is written.

    1/ Who advised you that it is for safety and control of the motorcycle? It takes control away and makes it more dangerous to the bike rider!

    1. Road Rule 271 is aimed to ensure that motorcyclists keep their feet on the footrests designed for use by the rider of the motorbike when moving so that the rider can maintain proper control of the motorbike by having direct access to the clutch and brake controls when moving.

    2/ How many lives do they think this change will save per year?

    2. There is no data that the RTA can draw on to make this determination. There are many manoeuvres and behaviours that may possibly contribute to motorcycle crashes occurring and the severity of the crash. However, the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) crash database, with data compiled from Police crash reports, does not record whether motorcycle riders have their feet on or off the footpegs at the time of the crash. Therefore, it is not possible to determine the number of motorcycle crashes where this may have been a contributing factor.

    3/ How many accidents have been caused by people not keeping their feet on the foot pegs in the last year?

    3. This is not a factor that is recorded in police crash reports.

    4/ The RTA repairs roads by spreading gravel on bitumen, When a bike slides at slow speed (below 50kph) the safest thing is to put your foot out to catch the slide, that is now illegal. It means that I have to either fall off or break the law. Which should I do?

    4. Motorcyclists should take heed of the road works signage. There is no reason why a motorcyclist should necessarily lose traction where RTA road works are taking place if they ride at the posted road works speed limit. If in the instance that traction is lost because of poor rider judgement and a foot is placed on the ground while the motorcycle is moving, the motorcyclist risks breaching the current provision. The RTA recommends motorcyclists ride to the conditions in order to ensure that they maintain optimal control of a motorcycle. This is best achieved when the feet are on the footrests while moving.

    5/ When pulling away, it is safest to leave your foot on the ground until you start to move off and then immediately place it onto the foot peg. If you try to balance a stationary bike while you get your feet from the ground and onto the pegs and then start to move off, you are starting to move off when you are off balance and that isn’t safe. What do I do in this situation?

    5. The action of moving off and moving a foot to the footrests can be achieved simultaneously.

    6/ When stopping it is not easy to come to a complete halt and balance your bike while you then move your feet from the pegs to the ground while the bike is stationary. What do I do in this situation?

    6. The action of coming to a complete stop on a motorcycle before putting a foot on the ground is ‘not easy’, but it is achievable.

    7/ When parking down the main street of Orange most riders use their front brake to stop which compresses the front suspension a little, as you stop and the suspension rises again you let the front brake off and the bike starts to roll backwards and you stay on the bike as you reverse it into the gutter. This is the quickest way to get off the road into the parking bay.
    It is the method most used by riders. But as you are on the bike while it is moving (backwards) this is now illegal. The safest way to move a bike if you can is to sit astride it, not walk beside it. This law now forces you to dismount the bike while out in the flow of traffic and then try and maneuver it off the road, exposing you to being hit by a car for a longer period of time. What do I do in this situation?

    7. If you are concerned about being hit by a car when trying to find a parking spot while adhering to the current provision, you are best advised to find a location to park where it is possible to park your motorcycle within the limitations of the current provision and in a manner that poses no risk to you or other road users.

    8/ What committee or individual recommended these changes be made law?

    8. The Road Rules 2008 are part of a national package, and superseded NSW Road Rules in 2008. As previously outlined, the practicalities of Road Rule 271 are currently under review.


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