23rd June 2011
On Thursday, June 16, the CEN (European Committee for Standardization) technical committee on road equipment (TC226) held its annual meeting in Stockholm. The draft standard for a road restraint protection system for motorcycles (EN1317-8) was on the agenda.
At the meeting, the committee chose to opt for a Technical Specification, which seems to have caused consternation amongst some motorcyclists. In fact the General Secretary of FEMA (Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations) commented “What will be done with this Technical Specification is a mystery to me. I have my doubts about the legitimacy of the arguments put forward by those who voted ‘no’ to a European Standard”.
Right To Ride contacted the CEN Committee secretary to find out the facts.
Over the previous months, representatives from various countries raised legitimate concerns about the Spanish protocol, because they felt that there were problems with the testing procedures for motorcyclists hitting crash barriers, the relevance of rider positions when crashing, the types of barriers and so forth. However the committee recognised that in the absence of something better, it was a starting point.
There was the general consensus within the Working Group 1 to develop the Spanish protocol and focus initially on the sliding configuration because the experience already gained with similar testing on a national basis would allow a European standard to be developed more quickly.
At the meeting on June 16th, rather than reject the proposed draft, the committee decided to accept it as a Technical Specification as an interim solution.
Thus the committee did not vote “no” to a European Standard.
The convenor of CEN/TC 226/WG1 explained that the plan is to undertake inter-laboratory testing, to ensure that the test procedures are understandable and that when identical tests according to the protocol are performed by different laboratories in different countries, the results obtained are the same.
According to the CEN secretary, the TC226 committee expects to have this standard ready and approved within the next two/three years.
For a better understanding of the issues surrounding motorcycle friendly crash barriers, the involvement of riders’ organisations and the CEN TC226 Committee, read our paper:
“The Mystery of Motorcycle Friendly Crash Barriers” pdf 696kb – Click Here
Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations – CEN misses historic opportunity to adopt European guardrail standard for motorcyclists – Click Here