Bike training in the future

Bike training in the future could be a much more hi-tech affair if trials of an innovative riding simulator prove successful.

Devon & Cornwall Police has taken delivery of a new state-of-the-art motorcycle simulator, funded by the DfT and Vision Zero South West, which uses a real motorbike – a Honda CB500X – and custom software to test the rider’s hazard awareness skills.

The rider sits on the bike and uses authentic controls including brakes, clutch, throttle and indicators as integrated video screens replicate real-life road conditions for them to ride in.

The set-up is made even more believable as it adds realistic vibration, surround sound and working wing mirrors.

The simulator is part of the Project APEX scheme which aims to reduce the number of motorcycle casualties and collisions across the country.

It is being piloted to gauge the effectiveness of simulated hazard awareness training and its impact on the reduction of serious and fatal collisions.

It’s not just aimed at learners either; the hope is that the simulator can help with rider improvement sessions, or to help with further training.

Other forces are said to be keeping an eye on how successful the pilot scheme is, with a view to it being rolled out to other regions in the future.

Ian Harvey, the police force’s motorcycle casualty reduction officer, said:

“Motorcyclists are one of the highest risk road users in Devon and Cornwall and across the UK, and we’re hoping the simulator will help us to provide vital skills to inexperienced riders in a safe environment.


“Every death and serious injury on our roads has a devastating impact. We’ll be using the simulator at every available opportunity to engage with riders about how they can hone their skills and help us to reduce the number of deaths or serious injuries on UK roads.”

The simulator will be touring across Devon and Cornwall over the next few months, calling in at colleges as well as exhibitions, county shows and bike races so as many bikers as possible can have a go.


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