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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 March 2007, 01:28 GMT 02:28 UK
Call for motorbike speed limiters
Cutting bikes' power and speed should be considered, say MPs
MPs have urged the government to carry out a study into the possibility of fitting speed limiters to motorbikes.

The House of Commons Transport Committee said accident rates are far too high and radical action is needed.

The report on government motorcycling strategy also said motorbikes were too polluting and that illegal use of mini motos was a problem.

The committee called on ministers to support the development of cleaner motorbikes to reduce pollution.

'Sensible debate'

The report said: "We recommend that the government commission...research on the viability of introducing speed limiters on motorcycles in order to stimulate a sensible debate of the options."

Cutting pollution was another argument for reducing the maximum power and speed of bikes, the MPs said.

The report noted that there was a massive increase in numbers of Motorcycles for Use on Private Property (MUPP).

The market was about 7,000 new bikes a year of this type in 2001, but an estimated 170,000 were imported to the UK in 2005.

There have been at least seven deaths involving mini motos since mid-2004, five of which were children under the age of 15.

Mini moto danger

The police have the power to seize mini motos being driven illegally off or on the road, or in an anti-social way.

The committee said police "blitzes" on the vehicles were effective short-term, but the long-term results were not so conclusive.

"We recommend that the government undertake a review of enforcement against mini motos to gauge whether police blitzes work to reduce anti-social behaviour in the longer term," said the report.

The MPs were concerned that the bikes were being bought by parents for their children "without understanding that they can be dangerous".

They concluded: "If the problem persists, the government should make the case to the EU trade commissioner to restrict the imports of these goods if they are of a particularly low standard, as the (motorcycle) industry appears to think is the case."

A motorcyclist criticises speed limiters

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