MAG Ireland - RoadRunner - December 2014
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December 2014

Seasons Greetings!

Christmas arrived early for MAG Ireland members this year with a cut in the membership fee for new and existing members alike which took effect from 1st December last. We also have an update on our distracted driving campaign launched last year.

For the long icy winter nights there's plenty of statistics and reading material from the Central Statistics Office Transport Omnibus 2013 and policy documents from Sweden and the UK.

Elsewhere, our formal title "Irish Motorcyclists' Action Group" is no more as we continue to adapt and evolve to meet the challenges of representing riders today. You'll find full details of all the above elsewhere in this issue.

If you’re planning a motorcycle related event in Ireland in 2015, let us know by sending details to and we'll add it to the Irish Motorcycle Events Calendar for free.

Please add this email address to your safe sender/whitelist to ensure you don't miss an issue of RoadRunner.

Your feedback (email to is always welcome.



MAG Ireland cuts membership fee by €5

Great news for everyone joining MAG Ireland or renewing their membership. Since 1st December 2014 last we've cut the cost of membership by €5.

We've worked hard to reduce our costs and we're delighted to be able to pass the savings on to you. A full years membership is now just €20 and you still get the full range of discounts through our group discount schemes with tens of thousands of Euro saved by members to date.

More importantly though, being a member means you are lending your voice and your vote to making MAG Ireland better at representing you and defending your rights as a rider.


Distracted Driving Update

Mobile phone fixed charge penalty notices

One of our major campaigns for 2014 was on the issue of Distracted Driving and in particular on the use of mobiles by drivers.

The latest available figures show over 26,000 drivers have been hit with fines and points for using a phone while driving up to the end of October 2014.

As part of our campaign MAG Ireland had pushed for increased penalties for this lethal practice and indeed these were later introduced with a Garda operation targeting drivers during April to drive home the message.


Trike licensing


Of late we've had a lot of queries regarding the license you need to hold to ride a trike. Our research team have been looking into this one with the help of the RSA, because as it turns out we may have uncovered some anomalies in the law.

We're aiming to produce a fact sheet covering all aspects of licensing for three wheeled vehicles in the near future, so keep an eye on the web site and RoadRunner for updates.

Separately, we're aware of a number of cases where trike riders are finding it difficult to obtain insurance. Our initial investigations suggest that the cause is a combination of insurance companies being uncertain of the licensing situation and type approval regulations from the EU compounding that confusion. More on this in the new year.


MAG Ireland in Bike Buyers Guide

Bike Buyers Guide Banner

The Annual issue of Bike Buyers Guide is in shops now and this month we take a look back at the last year and a bit of MAG Ireland's column.

We started off in October 2013 looking at Roadworthiness Testing through the lens of fifteenth century astronomy and we've gone from there via the Romans, Monty Python, Schrödinger's cat, Dock workers, Putin's vacuum cleaner and more besides as we took a somewhat skewed look at where motorcycling has come from, where it is today, and where it might be going in the future.

All that legal and legislative stuff can be a very dry and very dull subject, so we've tried to make it as accessible and engaging as we can. We've enjoyed putting it together, and we hope you've enjoyed reading it.


Review of 2014

With 2014 drawing to a close it’s time once again to pause and reflect on the advances made over the past twelve months.

First and foremost, we want to extend our sincere thanks to our members whose continued dedication to the aims and objectives of MAG Ireland is the sole reason we can continue to promote and protect Irish motorcycling.



Coming off the back of a few turbulent years during which the organisation was completely restructured, we shifted the focus to the promotion of motorcycling during 2014 and worked to highlight the positive benefits it brings to society.


B.I.K.E.R.S. Training celebrating 3 years

First Bike on Scene (FBoS) course providers B.I.K.E.R.S Training recently celebrated their third anniversary. 

First Bike on Scene – Emergency Response Skills is a one-day course covering immediate emergency skills for riders and other road users alike.

Full details of the course and the organisation behind it can be found on the B.I.K.E.R.S. Training web site at:


Introducing the Irish Motorcyclists' Association

Thirty years ago the Irish Motorcyclists' Action Group was born amid opposition to the exorbitant cost of insurance which was available only from the monopoly run by what was then Norwich Union.

A lot changes in thirty years, and the action group which was formed to campaign on the insurance issue widened its remit over time to include licensing, training, testing and much more besides.

Now the time has come for another change. MAG Ireland's formal name is "The Irish Motorcyclists' Action Group" and we're changing that to "The Irish Motorcyclists' Association".

MAG Ireland, The Irish Motorcyclists' Association

We'll be keeping the MAG Ireland brand and the "MAG Ireland" title but we believe that the "action group" tag line has passed its sell by date.

The way in which MAG Ireland represents your interests as a rider has changed almost beyond recognition over the past decade, and in this our 30th anniversary year we felt it was time for a new paradigm which better represents the inclusive nature of our organisation.

 We've long ceased to be a single issue action group. Our aims and objectives - promoting and protecting Irish motorcycling - remain the same. So does the commitment of our volunteers who give freely of their time and expertise.

From here on, that commitment will be under a new title:
MAG Ireland - The Irish Motorcyclists' Association.


Irish Motorbike & Scooter Show 2015

FEMA Banner

MAG Ireland will once again be in attendance at the upcoming Irish Motorbike and Scooter Show which takes place in the RDS, Dublin from Friday 27th February next.

Always a hugely popular show with in excess of 25,000 visitors the event is once again being sponsored by Carole Nash Insurance and will see all the main manufacturers exhibit the widest range of new bikes.

We'll have further details in the next issue so watch this space! In the meantime the organisers have been busy putting together the web site for the 2015 show. Click the button below for the latest information.


National Roads Authority Weather Stations

Right to Ride

The National Roads Authority (NRA) maintains a series of weather stations across the country.

If you're unsure about conditions before you head out on the bike or even in the car this winter it's well worth bookmarking their weather page which shows road and air temperatures as well as rainfall and wind speeds on key routes nationwide.

In addition, the NRA also have a smart phone app for iOS and Android which you can download and use to monitor traffic and alerts on the country's primary roads as well as live CCTV and real-time information from those weather stations.


CSO-Transport Omnibus 2013. 

Central Statistics Office has just released its Transport Omnibus 2013. Plenty numbers to ponder on there.



Huge savings for MAG Ireland members

We've now got a huge range of discounts for your everyday shopping wih top high street names like Heatons, Arnotts, Debenhams, Currys/PC World, Argos, B&Q, Boots and many more.

Christmas is fast approaching and with over €10,000 in savings made by members to date, now is the time to get your MAG Ireland membership in order and start claiming those discounts!


"Want motorcycling to be safer? Get more people to do it.." UK Police


"REALISING THE MOTORCYCLING OPPORTUNITY - A motorcycle safety and transport policy framework" is a landmark policy document which calls for more motorcycle use as a way to make to improve road safety overall.

The central point is that motorcycles should be included in mainstream transport policy. This is the opposite of treating motorcycling separately from all other modes or as an afterthought.

Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick of ACPO said: "Over recent years, the number of motorcycle casualties has reduced, which is encouraging. However, this reduction seems to be slowing, with the emphasis moving away from progress in safety and too many motorcyclists are still being killed and injured on the roads.

Steve Kenward, CEO of the Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA) said: "For too long, the Government, local authorities and transport planners seem to have deliberately avoided talking about motorcycle use. Motorcycles need to be treated as a legitimate form of transport, which can save time, space and money for commuters, whilst having the added benefit of reducing congestion for all road users."




European Motorcyclists' Forum 2015

MAG Ireland is planning to send a representative to the European Motorcyclists' Forum in Brussels in early February.

Hosted by the European Parliament members Inés Ayalá-Sender (S&D), Wim van de Camp (EPP), and Transport Committee Vice-Chairman Dominique Riquet (ALDE), the Forum will comprise of a full day workshop followed by a debate in the European Parliament.

The results of the FEMA led RiderScan Project in which MAG Ireland participated will be presented at the forum. 


Irish Motorcycle Events Calendar


We're working on the calendar for 2015 and we aim to list as many events as possible.

To add your event, send an e-mail to with a brief description of the event, facebook or web site link and the contact details of the organiser.


Sweden's riders publish their vision for motorcycling

SMC (MAG Ireland's equivalent in Sweden) is probably the most important stakeholder when it comes to improving safety for Swedish riders. 

The belief that most accidents are due to human errors and the motorcyclist always has the ultimate responsibility during the ride are the foundation of SMC’s Motorcycle Vision 2.0 which is now available for download...


Hi-Viz Panacea ?

Recent research published in The European Journal of Public Health entitled "The role of conspicuity in preventing bicycle crashes involving a motor vehicle   (CC)" casts rather significant doubt on the utility of hi-viz for cyclists.

Conclusion: Conspicuity aids may not be effective in preventing bicycle–motor vehicle crashes in New Zealand, particularly in Auckland, where attention conspicuity is low.


Help to protect motorcycling - Join Us

MAG Ireland

MAG Ireland represents Irish riders and is funded by Irish riders but we can only do that with the financial support of members subscriptions.

It now costs just €20 for a years membership, that’s less than 6 cent per day.

Not only that but we aim to save you the cost of your membership many times over via our exclusive vouchers and our group discount scheme. To get your member-only discounts follow the link on the top right hand side of  the site:

You can potentially save the cost of your membership many times over with great discounts like 10% off at all Halfords stores. 

If you can’t stretch to a membership subscription but you’d still like to help, just click the donate link on the menu at and give whatever you can.



You can follow MAG Ireland on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, RSS, email newsletter or website.

We aim to make it easy to keep up with everything we're doing no matter what platform you prefer to use.

Join us online today...


Help Needed

MAG Ireland is interested in hearing from riders with relevant expertise to assist the effort.

  • Civil/Roads Engineers for barrier and parking issues
  • Accountancy Professionals
  • Journalist/copywriter
  • Researchers:

Help Offered

We are interested in hearing from riders with a specific issue or campaign which they are pursuing at an individual or local level.

We're currently following up a number of parking issues for example. Let us know what's happening in your locality.


Bike Buyers Guide

Read MAG Ireland in this month's Bike Buyers Guide. See


Irish Bikers Bible

News, reviews and rally reports. Full details on