Petition against proposed changes to introduce a separate moped (scooter) licence in NZ!
Our mopeds in NZ are 50cc or smaller-engined 2 or 3 wheelers that do not exceed 50km/h and are not allowed on motorways. They have never required a special license to ride in NZ before. In all other countries a moped license is only required for riders who are not eligible for a car license because of their age. So the moped is seen in those advanced countries as a safer alternative to a car for younger drivers. For instance in Japan, England, Italy, France and Germany you can ride a moped long before you are allowed to drive a car. In these countries a moped license is also granted to any person gaining a driver's license or motorcycle license, as has been the case in NZ so far. The Draft Land Transport (Driver Licensing) Amendment Rule  would add Section 19A and 19B to the current legislation; Section 19A would require all riders of mopeds to obtain a special moped licence which would involve a written test, basic handling skills test and be at least 15 years of age. Section 19B imposes a condition on the moped licence, which would be that drivers are limited to no passengers (even if the moped is a genuine 2-seater). The move to introduce moped licensing in NZ comes after a string of legislation changes and cost increases for us, including: - increasing the annual cost of licensing a moped from approx $65 three years ago to $170 now - adding a 'motorcycle safety levy' six months ago of $30 per year. This is levied by ACC for a programme that was not consulted on and has not been advertised since. This means that ACC has already collected hundreds of thousands of dollars for a 'programme' that they have not scheduled or given any details to moped riders for. There are no concessions for moped or motorcycle riders even though we contribute to NZ's productivity by more quickly getting their riders between work and home, as well as producing far less exhaust emissions. Additionally by trying to price mopeds out of the public's bag of transport options, ACC and NZTA are forcing increasing numbers of people to more expensive, or more polluting, or slower methods of moving around our cities. The 'NZTA Crash List Detail Report' shows that 86% of all motorbike accidents involved another vehicle while, according to the 'Motorcycle Crash Fact Sheet' again produced by NZTA, four out of five of the most common crash types have a significant majority of other vehicles CAUSING the crash (ranging from 96% to 76%). Considering we do fantastic things for our cities and environment but receive no recognition for these positive contributions the draft amendment rule above is unacceptable! Don't let these agencies take away any more of your right to choose a better form of transport while blaming us instead of the real cause - uneducated, unaware car drivers. Statistics from the NZTA's own Crash Analysis System (CAS) shows that, of the 283 crashes involving mopeds between 2005 and 2009, 204 (72%) of them were the fault of another party. Of this 72%, 83% was "Failure to Look", "Failure to Give Way" or "Failure to Stop" - Basic fundamental road rules that we should all observe. Given the drastic rise in popularity of mopeds in NZ (14,000 in 2004 to over 31,000 in 2009), and the statistics around who is at fault in the vast majority of incidents, we believe it is the other road users who need to be properly educated, and properly taught how to share the road. Defensive driving courses should be practical, and teach the real hazards people will face when on the road. In a collision between a scooter and a car, the car will always inflict more damage. The driver of a car has more responsiblity for the safety and lives of others, and so should be the one getting more training. That's why truck drivers, captains of large container ships and cargo planes all have many more hours of compulsory training and testing than operators of smaller vehicles. We know government and ACC are trying to take the easy way out here, and we know we can do something about it. Sign up now, its free and its your right!