This 2010 project used a world leading motorcycle simulator to analyse rider behaviour and proved that safer doesn’t necessarily mean slower and that formal advanced training for bikers does improve their safety on our roads.
The study was carried out by researchers at The University of Nottingham’s Centre for Motorcycle Ergonomics & Rider Human Factors.
The aim of the research was to investigate the attitudes, behaviour and skills of different types of riders according to their level of experience and training. A unique approach was designed to find out whether or not riders with advanced training, ride their bikes differently to novice riders or experienced riders who don’t have an advanced qualification.
The simulator uses a Triumph Daytona 675 motorcycle mounted on a custom rig designed and built at the University. It creates a realistic interactive test system using ‘STI-SIM Drive’ simulation software which projects different riding scenarios onto a large screen in front of the rider.
Three groups of riders were put through a set of scenarios on the simulator as well as other tasks in the laboratory to test aspects of their hazard perception and rider behaviour. The findings showed that experience on its own does not make riders safer on the road and in some cases the experienced riders behaved more like the novice riders. Advanced riders used better road positions to anticipate and respond to hazards, kept to urban speed limits, and actually made better progress through bends than riders without the formal advanced training.