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Pleas for greater safety after two bikers die

Men killed in separate incidents on same day

Devon and Cornwall Police have issued an urgent road safety plea after two motorcyclists were killed and a third seriously injured in the force area on Wednesday.

The first incident was in a two-vehicle collisionon the A35 at Taunton Cross, near Shute, Axminster. The rider of the BMW motorbike, a man in his forties, died at the scene.

The second incident occurred at around 10pm at Horningtops between Looe and Liskeard. This collision involved two motorbikes. A 21-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene, whilst another man was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

So far this year, 25 motorcyclists have been killed or critically injured in Devon and Cornwall. 

Supt Adrian Leisk, strategic roads policing lead at Devon & Cornwall Police, said: “These collisions change lives forever - the hurt and pain they cause to families and friends is beyond measure and our officers have had to deliver bad news to far too many people this year.

“All road users have a responsibility to keep themselves and each other safe. We are seeing increasing occurrences when cars or other vehicles are pulling out in front of motorbikes without seeing them. Please take more time and look twice whenever you are at a junction or turning in the road. 
“I’d also appeal to motorcyclists to slow down.

"Many of the incidents we have been called to have involved biker error, speed and dangerous overtaking – so please, slow down and ride safely.

“Our speed detection officers will be out in force at locations across Devon and Cornwall over the summer.”

Police and crime commissioner Alison Hernandez, who is also chair of the Vision Zero South West road safety partnership, said: “Motorcyclists do not have the benefit of being enclosed in a steel cage for their safety and this makes them extremely vulnerable on the roads.

“We know the south west is an amazing location for bikers with so much beauty on our doorstep. While most motorcyclists ride safely, unfortunately we are seeing some who do not .

“I want all motorcyclists to enjoy their ride and everything that Devon and Cornwall has to offer, but please make sure you do it safely and return home to your loved ones at the end of the day.”

On Monday, Sgt Owen Messenger of the Road Casualty Reduction Team issued a direct and emotional plea to motorcyclists in Devon and Cornwall.

In his address, he said: “Sadly, the majority of collisions we have attended have involved bikers riding too fast, overtaking dangerously and losing control.

“Every one of these incidents has tragic consequences. They leave children without parents, partners without loved ones and heartbroken friends left mourning their best mates.

“I want to take this opportunity to speak directly to anyone who rides a motorbike in Devon and Cornwall - please, please slow down.

“We know speed is a major contributory factor in serious and fatal collisions. It gives you less time to react and increases the likelihood of serious injury – both to yourself and to others around you.

“I’d also like to appeal to the families and friends of those who ride motorbikes – please remind them how much you want them to come home after their ride.

“Our officers have had to knock on far too many doors to tell people their loved ones are never coming home again.

“Please, stay safe on the roads. Enjoy the ride, arrive alive.”

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