The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is petitioning the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration to make anti-lock brakes a
federally mandated safety feature on all new motorcycles. Justifying the
need, the IIHS cites statistics that show ABS-equipped motorcycles are
38 percent less likely to be involved in a fatal crash than identical
models without the equipment. Previously, Hell For Leather commenters
expressed concern that ABS crash statistics could be skewed when popular
ABS-equipped bikes like large BMW touring bikes were compared to bikes
that typically don't come without the feature, bikes like sports bikes.
The argument was that BMW's tend to be ridden by experienced riders in
full safety gear, while many sportsbike rides tend to be less
experienced and therefore more likely to stick themselves into a tree. >
Here's the IIHS's petition in full.
The American Motorcyclist Association isn't supporting the measure due to the increased cost -- estimated to be in excess of $1,000 per bike -- and the need for bikes designed to travel off-road as well as on to be equipped with brakes that can lock. They argue that ABS should become an option on more bikes, but not be made mandatory.
"Traveling on two wheels instead of four is always riskier, but our new research shows that anti-lock brake technology can make motorcycle riding a much safer way to get around," stated Adrian Lund, the IIHS president.
Thanks for the