On 23 September 2014, the FIM organised a dinner debate at the European Parliament hosted by Members of Parliament Wim van de Camp (Netherlands) and Inés Ayala Sender (Spain), who are both members of the Parliament’s Transport Committee. The participants in the dinner came from various horizons - European institutions as well as from the motorcycle & protective equipment industries - to discuss road safety from racetrack to road and how to bring the benefit of motorcycle sport innovations to Europe's 37 million motorcyclists.
During the dinner, FIM representatives underlined the new safety technologies developed first for motorcycle races and then transferred to the normal bikes such as adaptive engine settings or anti-lock braking systems. They advocated for a clear distinction in riders’ mind between on-road traffic and on-track racing and explained that encouraging the motorcycle sport on close circuits can actually have also a positive impact on road safety.
Mr Grasselli, Commercial Director at the Italian brand Dainese, presented “D-Air”, an airbag system developed specifically for motorcycle riders and tested during MotoGP competition. He highlighted that the brand now offers a similar system for the daily riders and is looking at possibilities to expand the D-Air on all the motorcycles models.
Mr Girao, Head of Unit at the European Commission in charge of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), outlined the main elements of the Commission’s proposal to revise the current Directive. He insisted that the proposal is strictly limited to ensuring that the equipment labelled as “protective” on the European market complies with a certain number of requirements to achieve a satisfactory level of protection against hazards. Mr Girao explained that the proposed Regulation does not make any mention of an obligation for riders to wear a certain type of protective equipment and neither does any other EU regulation.
During the Q&A session, participants had a chance to learn more about the technical characteristics of the D-air system and to request a few explanations on specific points of the Commission’s proposal.
Mr van de Camp and Ayala Sender made the concluding remarks and thanked the FIM for organising the dinner as well as the various speakers and participants who all underlined the commitment of FIM towards safety on both the road and the racing track.
Photos credit: Blueclic Photography (http://www.blueclic.com)