Regulation A New Dimension

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG UK) has upped the ante or tried to increase the stakes by tying in the proposed framework regulations for motorcycles – stricter anti-tampering regulations amongst others – with the affect of European harmonisation, new legislation faced by French riders from their government and demos in England, mass day of action by all vehicle drivers in France and possible co-ordinated action across Europe on the 18th June.

According to the message from MAG UK, French legislators have decided that motorcyclists should compulsorily wear dayglo and reflective clothing.

The French Legislators also want to see immediate jail terms for those caught doing more than 30mph over the speed limit and larger numberplates for bikes so that they can be more easily prosecuted.

MAG’s Campaigns Co-ordinator Paddy Tyson said, “It’s bad enough when the EU Commission decides we’ll all have compulsory ABS or not be permitted to change our tyres, sprockets or air filters, as with the new anti-tampering Regulation, but our friends across the Channel have just been hit with a raft of legislation that can indeed affect us almost immediately, but may well do so in the near future.”

Adding  “There are a raft of other things and remember France went ahead with the 100bhp limit back in the 90’s, but not surprisingly, the French riding community aren’t best pleased and are arranging a mass day of action for June 18th.”

MAG is already planning to demonstrate its displeasure at the EU by holding a Demo in Leeds on the 28th May and the Brum Demo on 2nd July and Paddy Tyson says, “Keep your ear to the ground for news of possible co-ordinated action across Europe on the 18th.”

The demos in England against the proposals from the EU give riders taking part the opportunity to voice their concerns publicly.

While we  support French riders and their opposition against the legislation they now face, we cannot see the tenuous links that Paddy Tyson has made with his statement that, “We all know how the harmonisation of Europe can mean we are all affected by the decisions of one Member State.”

While MAG aims to use “Megaphone Diplomacy”, to get riders involved and perhaps stirred up a bit, they do so by making a link to the proposal in “its full glory” to FEMA’s (Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations) seven month old position (October 2010),  that the European Commission is effectively ending the 100bhp limit – something that riders in France have uniquely suffered from.

The issues that the proposed EU regulations affect all riders across Europe, has moved on to a whole new dimension.

Latest Reports

A draft report published by the IMCO rapporteur MEP Win van de Camp on the 6th May, includes amendments to the EU proposal and is being being presented next week (Tuesday 24th May) to the IMCO committee in the EU parliament.

As we have already reported, MEP and Chair of the IMCO Malcolm Harbour has written to all stakeholders regarding their concerns on Mandatory ABS;  Anti-tampering;  Regular random spot checks at roadside; Mandatory Automatic Headlight-On (AHO); Mandatory on board diagnostic equipment (OBD); Small series reductions and individual vehicle approval.

We reported that some sense and sensibility has been brought to the debate and have stated, “we still disagree with some of the response”.

Since our last report on the regulations we have looked at this IMCO Draft report and if you have the time or inclination to read through the rapporteur’s amendments, they will see that mandatory ABS, AHO, OBD have all been accepted with some alterations, Euro 3 has been deleted from the timetable and the introduction of the regulations has been moved back a year.

The jury is still out regarding anti-tampering – but that’s only because the Commission has contracted TRL (Transport Research Laboratory) to do a study to see if it is a problem! (although the IMCO may argue that there is a cost implication and because of the anti-tampering implications restricting the aftermarket manufacturers).

We have prepared a response to Wim van de Camp’s draft report which we will publish after we see  the IMCO meeting next week (possibly with more amendments).

Some Conclusions

However we have come to the conclusion that this whole issue is not just about regulations for motorcycles.

It seems to us at least that this whole proposal and counter proposal from the IMCO is a “test case” specifically in reference to the new regulation “REGULATION (EU) No 182/2011 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 16 February 2011 – laying down the rules and general principles concerning mechanisms for control by Member States of the Commission’s exercise of implementing powers”

We had picked up a while back that everybody had been bamboozled because nobody really understood the inference throughout the Commission’s proposal to delegated acts and infact we wrote a lot about this and the regulations on L category vehicles. Delegated acts are an entirely new world, notably with the abolition of Comitology Committees.

see our article – Regulation Masterclass – Click Here

A Balance Of Power

As we have been reading through the IMCO draft report, we have recognised that the issues surrounding safety and environment are relevant – but only up to a point.

Of far more interest are the comments in the draft report relating to the balance of power between the Commission and parliament e.g. on page 9 – the IMCO rapporteur has amended:

“Proposal for a regulation Recital 18 (18) In order to lay down uniform conditions for the implementation of this Regulation with regard to the list of information to be provided in applying for type-approval, type-approval procedures, templates for manufacturers’ additional plates, EU type-approval certificates, list of type-approvals issued, numbering system for EU type-approvals, and procedures to ensure conformity of production, implementing powers should be conferred to the Commission. (adding the following text) Those powers should be exercised in accordance with Regulation (EU) No 182/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 February 2011 laying down the rules and general principles concerning mechanisms for control by Member States of the Commission’s exercise of implementing powers1. etc etc”

In reference to article 76 on page 31 of the draft report “1b. The delegation of power referred to in Articles 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 30, 52, 56,57, 60, 66 and 75 may be revoked at any time by the European Parliament or by the Council. etc etc.

Which amends the Commission’s proposal “1. The powers to adopt the delegated acts referred to in Articles 16, 18, 19, 20, 21,22, 30, 52, 56, 57, 60, 66 and 75 shall be conferred on the Commission for an indeterminate period of time”. and so forth.

Our personal view is that very few people understand the implications of this “test case” which surrounds the proposals put forward by the Commission.

To summarize: An amendment is included in the Draft Report that allows Parliament to strip the Commission of its delegated powers. That “get out” clause indicates that we might as well pack up and go home, because the European Parliament will almost certainly vote in favour of the Commission’s proposal (albeit with some amendments) because of the safety and environmental aspects, which the IMCO agree with.   FEMA has told us that Wim van de Camp is the biker’s friend and an expert, but our view is that one man’s expert is another man’s nemesis.

Next Meeting

The next IMCO meeting will take place on Tuesday 24th May 2011 at 9am and we will consider Wim Van De Camp’s draft report – the meeting will be webstreamed – Click Here

The committee vote is scheduled for 15th June 2011 with adoption by the EU Parliament in September.

Further amendments can be added to the report,  for example we have sent changes which we know have been received – specifically regarding L4e category vehicles (motorcycle with sidecar) and mistakes we found relating to trial and enduro specifications.

We know that both ACEM – the Motorcycle Industry in Europe and FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme) will be asking for changes to the draft report.  Even the chair of the IMCO, Malcolm Harbour is proposing changes to the draft report.

We have also made our views on the various “safety” aspects abundantly clear to the Commission’s representatives, Wim van de Camp, Malcolm Harbour, FEMA and Uncle Tom Cobbly and will continue to do so.

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  1. To reiterate

    The governments of Great Britain and Northern Ireland have no plans (or inklings of plans) to introduce mandatory high visibility jackets/vests or clothing for motorcyclists.

    The EU Commission’s proposal for the approval and market surveillance of 2 and 3 wheel vehicles and quadricycles does not include any proposal for high visibility jackets/vests or clothing for motorcyclists.

    The EU Commission’s proposal for the approval and market surveillance of 2 and 3 wheel vehicles and quadricycles does not aim to restrict the building of custom bikes which would be left to member states to regulate under SVA, nor does it intend to restrict the sale of type approved aftermarket parts for motorcycles.

    The EU Commission’s proposal for the approval and market surveillance of 2 and 3 wheel vehicles and quadricycles refers to new motorcycles and is not retrospective.

  2. It’s a joke politicians coming up with rubbish trying to look important.

    I’ve been driving 20 years without a dayglo jacket and getting on fine. I have front lights and back lights on my bike just like a car so will cars have to have a dayglo coloured door so they can be seen from the side.

    Have they any idea of the money or jobs that will be lost because of these measures I don’t know anyone who has not got some aftermarket part on their bike.

    I have no idea why most people in Ireland think the EU is so great all that is coming out of their is stupid new rules and taxes. Next time thay land here that should be escorted back to the plane and told not so politely to leave.

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