Big bikes to face tougher rules
Big bikes will be redefined in the law and riders of the vehicles subject to stricter licensing procedures to increase road safety, according to highway police.
Highway Police Division (HPD) deputy chief Santikorn Vorawan admitted that catching big bike riders is easier said than done. The bikes are often driven at high speed although they are legally classified in the same group as ordinary motorcycles.
The speed and lack of special driving skills to handle vehicles capable of travelling at such high speeds leave their riders especially prone to road accidents. When crashes involving big bikes occur, the damage is usually far greater than those involving ordinary motorcycles, the deputy commander said.
In terms of size, motorcycles with an engine of 400cc or bigger which produce at least 47 horsepower are treated by law as big bikes.
Also, a person must be 18 years old or older to hold a big-bike driver's licence. Currently, a motorcycle licence requires has a minimum age of 15 years old.
Pol Col ML Santikorn added that "anyone applying for a licence to ride a big bike will need to attend special training sessions" and pass a test organised by the DLT.
The deputy commander, meanwhile, said fining speeding big-bike riders is not easy since motorcycles carry the number plates on the back of the vehicle whereas the police's remote speed sensors only capture photos of vehicles from the front.
He added that some big bikes were owned by people connected to high-ranking individuals or those with influence and junior police who caught them violating traffic laws were afraid to arrest or fine them.
A crash involving a big bike that was driven by a 13-year-old boy and injured two people in Chiang Mai last weekend has shown the dangers of powerful motorcycles on public roads, particularly of those in the hands of careless riders.
On July 7, a boy's 1,000cc Kawasaki bike rammed into a motorcycle that an elderly couple was riding, causing the boy's bike to slide down the road and hit another motorcycle.
The boy sustained severe injuries to his foot and the couple were slightly injured.
The case sparked criticism of the boy's parents, and raised questions as to why they allowed their son to ride such a powerful bike despite the fact that he does not have a driver's licence.
Learn from listening
- criticism: comments that show that you think something is wrong or bad - การวิจารณ์
- damage (noun): physical harm caused to something which makes it less attractive, useful or valuable - ความเสียหาย
- despite (prep): used to show that something happened or is true although something else might have happened to prevent it; used to show that somebody did not intend to do the thing mentioned - ถึงอย่างไรก็ตาม, ทั้ง ๆ ที่
- easier said than done (idiom): to be much more difficult to do than to talk about - พูดง่ายกว่าทำ
- fine: to be required to pay an amount of money because you have broken the law - ปรับเป็นเงิน
- handle: to be able deal with a situation - ควบคุมได้, จัดการได้
- influence: the power to have an effect on people or things - อิทธิพล
- prone (verb): to likely to experience a particular problem more often than is usual - ที่มีแนวโน้ม
- rammed: hit or pushed with force - กระแทก
- sensor: a device that can react to light, heat, pressure, etc. in order to make a machine, etc. do something or show something - อุปกรณ์ส่งสัญญาณที่ไวต่อแสงหรืออุณหภูมิ, ตัวเซ็นเซอร์
- severely: very seriously - อย่างรุนแรง
- violate: to do something that is against the law - ละเมิดกฏหมาย