French motorcyclists protest against mandatory motorcycle testing

French bikers have taken to the streets in an attempt to overturn the governments' U-turn on mandatory motorcycle safety testing

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YOUR annual motorcycle MOT is sometimes, for owners of older machines, a nervy time of year. No matter how much love and care you give your two-wheeled companion, there is always the worry you might have missed something important.

And it’s a worry that until now at least, many French motorcyclists have not had to endure, as Contrôle technique vehicle safety checks were not required for vehicles of more than 125cc. That looks set to change though, as the European parliament is piling the pressure on the French government to implement the test.

This pressure resulted in France’s top administrative court ruling that safety inspections for motorcycles, despite the French president, Emmanuel Macron, being quoted as saying he didn’t want to ‘bother French people'. This U-turn means that mandatory testing, similar to the motorcycle MOT we have in the UK, is now slated to begin in 2023, and bikers across the channel are not happy about the news.

There was a lifeline against the ruling though, which centred around the government in France introducing alternative measures to improve motorcycle safety and environmental impact. That lifeline seems to have now been overturned, quite possibly because these ‘alternative measures’ either didn’t go far enough or weren’t full and completed sufficiently to allow them to be considered.

In response to the news, French news website, The Local, reports that environmental NGOs are over the moon with the decision, which comes at a time of uncertainty for bikers in the nation. It was only September this year when parking charges for motorcycles came into force in Paris, while 2021 saw the capital hit with a blanket speed limit of 30kph.

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