If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.

- George Washington

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

EU bike proposals - e-petition

Marta Andeasen, MEP for South-East England, has started an e-petition calling for the scrapping of the EU anti-biker proposals. I would urge everyone to consider getting over there and signing it. Here's the link:


here's the text:
The EU is proposing the Regulation on approval and market surveillance of two- or three-wheel vehicles and quadricycles : COM(2010)0542 We call on the Government at European Council, Ministerial, at Commons and at Lord's level, as well as British MEPs and MPs to oppose, in the strongest terms, this proposed legislation.
and here's the rationale from her website:
Brussels 25 March 2011. Motorcyclists across Britain are facing misery after the European Commission published plans to regulate 2, 3 and 4 wheel quad bikes. UKIP MEP Marta Andreasen is working closely with Motorcycle groups and wants to see the regulation shelved.

The plans, which will go to the Internal Market Committee of the European Parliament in late May, include:

1. Compulsory Advanced Braking Systems (ABS). ABS does not work well on loose surfaces. The costs of fitting, maintenance and repair have not been properly assessed. The Commission’s internal Impact Assessment admits that the data on the effectiveness and costs of compulsory ABS is weak. Where riders choose bikes with ABS the rider must be able to turn the system off when riding on loose surfaces such as gravel.

2. ‘Anti-Tampering’ measures (this restricts riders’ choice of air filters, engine management systems, internal parts, exhausts,
sprockets, tyres, etc.). The riders’ ability to make modifications to suit their own situation should not be regulated. The ability of qualified riders to de-restrict or otherwise tune their vehicle should not be removed.

3. Road-side Spot-checks targeting riders. Riders are to be detained for random checks of emissions and modifications. It is unacceptable to deny freedom of movement in this way. If this was applied to cars and other forms of road transport, there would be uproar.

In a statement from Brussels Mrs Andreasen said,

“Yet again we are forced to witness the EU sticking its nose in where it is not needed. What is worse is that the proposals show a distinct lack of understanding of how motorbikes work and, if implemented, could ironically make bikes less safe. Typically the European Commission has decided to blunder in and create a problem where none exists.

“I am starting a campaign with bikers across the UK to lobby their local MEP and ensure that this needless legislation is thrown on the scrap heap. Forcing expensive braking systems that don’t work well on motorcycles, preventing bikers choice on what tyres or exhausts they want on their bikes and randomly stop-checking them goes far beyond nanny-stateism at its worst. It is actually a form of victimisation.”
Looks like UKIP is the only one on the side of bikers at the moment.


  1. 200 signatures when I signed. 439 now.

  2. Just signed the petition. If these regulations get implemented I'll just be ignoring all of them. I'll order parts from the US and there's no way I'm going to wear hi viz, unless something really sarcastic about these regulations is written on the back.

  3. Good man. I was perusing the website you mentioned in your email, and I was thinking the same thing. If you have to wear hi-viz, then get a jacket with FUCK THE EU across the back. OK, that's a bit confrontational. How about I AM NOT SURE I FULLY AGREE WITH THE EU APPROVAL AND MARKET SURVEILLANCE REGULATIONS COM(2010)0542 IN THEIR ENTIRETY?

    Would need a small font. Perhaps I will stick with the first one.

    As to ignoring them - me too. If everyone ignored them, no problem. They can't arrest us all. But of course, most will say "it's for our own good" and fall into line.

  4. The more confrontational the better. I could just imagine being pulled by the plod for having an offensive message on my hi viz. It would be against the law if they told me to take it off. In fact, below the FUCK THE EU message would be a nice graphic of the finger.

  5. Signed - #770.

    I can see I'm likely to be spending a lot of roadside time arguing that black IS high-visibility, given that the most accurate and sensitive visual receptors in the human eye are monochrome-only. Might just paint "FUCK THE EU" on the back anyway, though.

    And, seriously, who in the name of all that is sane thinks they're going to be taking my bike apart at the side of the road to see if I've got a fucking K&N fitted instead of an oem filter - people who've obviously never seen just how ugly one of today's standard small-plates-and-illegal-exhausts "inspection" can get?

  6. This idea clearly has legs. Asterisks may be necessary for the message, as I think you could well be pulled for the original (and with my sensible hat on, rightly so), but something equally pithy and non-offensive would be good.

    I'll think of something.

    Agreed the idea of these roadside checks is ludicrous. Would these regs give the police the right to dismantle your bike to inspect your air filter? At the moment, they don't have the right to remove a cover to inspect your numberplate if you are parked illegally (if I remember correctly). The 'market surveillance' phrase in the title of the regs seems to suggest that they might be given exactly those powers. Will they have a database of all manufacturers' recommended tyre fitments when they check yours out?

    Hmm, Sir, your bike has a Bridgestone on the back. It's the right size, but Triumph only specified Dunlop or Avon. Right, let's be having you ...

    I suspect that they will not do it this way. It will be done by systems sealed at the factory with tamper-evident seals. They won't need to look hard, or have any expertise. If a seal is gone from the massive plastic moulding that contains your airbox and throttle bodies, or the exhaust headers, then you are nicked, Sir.

    "No user-serviceable parts inside."

  7. That sounds crazy, what's wrong with the system we've got in place now? It's worked for all this time hasn't it?

  8. Apparently not. Someone, somewhere, had the freedom to do something that was not 'approved' by people who have never ridden a bike. That had to be stopped.


  9. That's it, the baffle's coming out!:) Signed.

  10. That's it! Prison for you!



  11. Dear Marta Andeason!

    First of all, I have to say „sorry“ for my poor English, as an German I´m not very used to
    write in English.

    Today I´ve read an interview with Malcom Harbour (MEP of Eu-Parlament) at fema-online.
    It`s dealt about the Type Approval Regultation and there it is mentioned that a British MEP
    has launched a petition versus this Regulation. So I checked the internet and there I found your name – so I guess you are the one who launched the petition.
    I did the same! I sent a petition signed by 45 german motorbike riders versus the abs mandority to the eu-parlament. Please have look at my webside www.antifah.de.
    It is in German of course in but maybe as a MEP you have the possibilty to translate it.

    I`d like to come in contact to – to find out if we can help each other or work together - in German there is a say, it means: Together we are strong.

    Best wishes from Berlin


  12. Hi Jens

    Sorry, but I am not an MEP, just an ordinary biker from the UK trying to publicise this petition. I am very flattered, though!

    Please keep in touch if you think we can work together, though.

    6896 and counting.


Comment is free, according to C P Scott, so go for it. Word verification is turned off for the time being. Play nicely.

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