Can I ride my motorcycle during the 2021 COVID-19 lockdown?

As the UK is yet again forced into another full lockdown, Visordown explains when you can and can’t ride your motorcycle

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IN a largely unwanted but wholly necessary twist to 2021, prime minister Boris Johnson has ordered England into another full lockdown to halt the spread of COVID-19. We are now being advised to stay at home for at least seven weeks.

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The new restrictions are the toughest the nation has seen since last March, with schools, non-essential shops, and other businesses being asked to close once more. The lockdown will last at least seven weeks, with schools staying closed until mid-February.

With this in mind, you may be looking to your motorcycle as an escape route to take your mind off the pandemic, although doing so could put you at risk of COVID-19 guidelines and in doing so you could risk being fined.

What are the fines for breaching the lockdown?

Should you breach any of the government's coronavirus restrictions, you could be issued with a fixed penalty notice for the first offence of £200. This doubles up for further offences up to a maximum of £6,400.

Can I ride my motorcycle during the COVID-19 lockdown?

The UK has moved into tier 5, the highest level of COVID-19 alert the nation has seen. With that, you may now only leave the house if you a ‘reasonable excuse’. This has been written into law and the police can fine those breaching the restrictions - see above.

The government defines a reasonable excuse as one of the following:

  • For work that is essential and cannot be completed from home.
  • Volunteering in any capacity
  • Essential activities – shopping or procuring services for you or somebody you care for
  • Education and childcare
  • Meeting others in care – if they are part of your support bubble – click here
  • Exercise – with one person in your household or support bubble and not outside of your local area
  • For medical reasons such as visiting the hospital, the doctors or getting a COVID test
  • Harm or compassionate reasons – click here
  • Animal welfare reasons – to attend the vets for instance
  • Worship and life events – click here

There are further reasons that may permit you to leave our home, for more information on those and all of the above listed reasonable excuses, head to: gov.uk

With the rules stating that you cannot leave the house without a reasonable excuse, the only time you could use your motorcycle and be within the regulations is for one of the reasons above. For instance, the government and police do not deem motorcycling to be exercise enough on its own, but using your motorcycle to commute to an open-air place for a walk is permitted – as long as the location you travel to is still in your ‘local area’. That said, the government would much rather people were walking from and to the place of exercise as if you are taking your bike, is it really that local?

You can still use your bike to commute, and in fact, doing so may be the best option during the lockdown as the roads should be quieter than usual. That said, adding to the burden of the NHS at this time would be totally counter-productive, so riding with caution and wearing all safety equipment is a must.

Meeting people indoors or outdoors who do not live with you or who are in your support bubble is now prohibited. You can still exercise with one person who is from your household outdoors. Social distancing must be adhered to and remember to sanitize your hands regularly and wear a face covering.

For more information on the latest COVID-19 guidelines and to find out more about the national lockdown, head to: gov.uk/guidance/national-lockdown-stay-at-home

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