Auckland Transport

Motorcycle safety

Auckland's roads are changing for motorcyclists. Whether you are new to riding, or an experienced rider, we are working to help keep you safe.

Statistics and safety awareness  

There are an increasingly high number of motorcycle crashes across the Auckland region. 34 people died and 349 were seriously injured as a result of motorcycle crashes in the Auckland region between 2011 and 2015. The most common crash factor was poor observation.

We are committed to helping reduce the number of death and serious injury (DSI) crashes involving motorcyclists by making training options available as well as through motorcycle education campaigns and programmes.

The risk of a motorcyclist being killed or injured in road crashes is 21 times higher than for car drivers over the same distance travelled*. Riding a motorcycle requires a different set of skills and a higher level of vehicle control than driving a car. The potential outcomes of any crash, whether caused by the rider, other road users, the road environment or the vehicle itself, are more severe for motorcyclists. 

We have been running campaigns to raise awareness about motorcycle safety. Our first campaign was last year in November 2016 with the purpose to encourage both motorcycle riders and drivers to share the road safely by being more vigilant and aware of each other. This year we are running another awareness campaign which focuses on the key messages of ‘Be safe. Be seen’ (targeting riders) and ‘Hard to see. Check your blind spot’ (targeting drivers).

Furthermore, to encourage riders to upskill by attending training courses, we are working in partnership with ACC to promote the Ride Forever Training Courses.

*Download the data source: Ministry of Transport, 2015 (PDF 756KB)

Motorcycles image

Using bus and transit lanes safely

Motorcycles are allowed where there are signs saying “Bus Lane” or “Transit Lane” (e.g. T2, T3. They are not allowed where there is a “Bus Only” sign.

Crashes tend to happen when motorcycles are going faster than other traffic because the bus lane is clear.

Be extra careful at driveways and intersections where cars are waved through a queue by another driver.

'B' traffic lights

If the rider of a cycle, moped, or motorcycle is lawfully using a bus lane, while a white 'B' signal is displayed, they can:

  • travel straight ahead or turn right or turn left; or, 
  • turn right or turn left even though a traffic signal is displaying a red signal in the form of a disc.

Find out more on New Zealand Legislation website

At intersections

Many crashes happen when a driver does not see a motorcyclist, especially at intersections. Here are some helpful hints and tips:

  • Continuously scan ahead for traffic.
  • Always ensure that traffic waiting to turn at the intersection ahead can clearly see you. Be aware that you and your motorcycle might be in the blind spot generated by the vehicle in front.
  • When approaching intersections, you need to be clearly visible to all turning traffic at all times. You may need to adjust your approach position, depending on whether traffic is waiting to turn from the left or the right.

Rider skills training

Brush up on your riding skills for summer with 8 hours of Ride Forever motorcycle training from $20. You’ll cover the key motorcycle control skills of positioning, speed management, progression, stability, and much more.

From learning how to keep yourself safe on the daily commute to honing the most advanced riding techniques, there’s a Ride Forever course to suit your needs. 

Register for Ride Forever training

Motorcycle safety gear

Protective gear is a must for every ride. The essential items are:

  • Helmet - by law, you must wear a helmet to protect yourself from head injury.
  • Boots and gloves – to prevent breakages and abrasion.
  • Jacket or leathers – one- or two-piece suits to protect against abrasions.

Motorcycle shops can offer advice on what is right for you. Or find out more about choosing the right gear on the Ride Forever website.

High visibility gear is becoming standard for riders and is easily available. Bright clothing, backpacks and bikes can also improve visibility to car drivers. 

Get a free high visibility vest from AT

Report a problem on Auckland roads

Please inform us of any maintenance required, such as reporting a pothole or loose gravel. Ask for improvements to make your motorcycle ride safer. 

For more information

Contact Auckland Transport