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France: be visible or get done!

Claude Guéant, French Interior Minister, has just announced one of the most ridiculous and absurd pieces of legislation that will force all bikers in France from 1st January 2013 to wear at least 125 cm2 of reflective clothing between the waist and the shoulders. Not only bikers who reside in France will be obliged to comply with this policy but also all those who visit France by motorbike/scooter. If you are caught not wearing the required reflective clothing, you will be liable for a fine of 68 euros payable on the spot and at least two points taken off your licence.

This is one of the most laughable and absurd pieces of legislation we have ever heard of because a) reflective clothing is precisely not reflective during day light and b) those who ride machines of up to 125cc will be exempt from wearing any reflective clothing on the grounds that they don’t ride a powerful enough bike to be considered dangerous on the roads! Let’s not forget that a very large number of motorcyclists who ride a moped or a 125cc bike are precisely those who don’t hold a full motorcycle licence and have only attended at the very most a one-off 7 hour training course all together. But for the short-minded French transport authorities, bikers who ride larger machines are the ones who cause most concern on the roads because they have been much better trained than every other biker!

Despite three enormous demonstrations during 2011 attended by more than 100,000 bikers and that brought the whole of France to a complete stop, the French government still doesn’t get it. Or, to be more accurate, the French government seems to be willing to see the whole country brought to a complete standstill again by angry bikers in no later than this coming spring and during the presidential elections campaign. The very famous and respected French motorcycle pressure group FFMC (Fédération Française des Motards en Colère) has already warned the government of their plans to organise extremely disruptive demonstrations across the whole nation. FFMC’s Frederic Jeorge said “It will be considered almost as bad as driving without a helmet, even if you are wearing full leather armour, on a bike with the headlights on and knowing that our helmets already have 4 mandatory reflective stickers… Also, it will NOT include the mopeds and 125cc, where’s the logic?”

Whilst it makes perfect sense to educate bikers to be more visible on the roads to minimise the risk of collisions resulting from car drivers not seeing them, it also makes sense to educate car drivers to share the roads with bikers and make them realise that they don’t own the roads. Why are car drivers not forced to apply a yellow sticker at the back (and front) of their vehicle to make it more visible? Why are riders and drivers not treated equally on the roads and, more importantly, why are bikers being constantly treated as irresponsible and rogue citizens?

If a series of enormous demonstrations had not taken place throughout France in 2011 against this policy, it would not only be 125 cm2 of reflective clothing that would be required on all bikers but their entire chest, arms and back would have been to be covered! Sadly, we all very well know that the whole point of this policy is for the government to catch as many bikers as possible who don’t comply and take 68 euros of their hard earned money. Rather than investing in adequate training for both riders and drivers, the government prefers to impose stupid rules and make money out of them.

Oh well, all we can say is that we look forward to seeing France brought to a complete standstill right in the middle of the presidential elections campaign by more than 100,000 angry bikers blocking the roads in every town and city nationwide. In fact, we can’t wait… bring it on and let’s all have a laugh!

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

UK bikers must comply with Continuous Insurance Enforcement rules this winter

Some bikers tend not to use their motorbikes or scooters during the winter months, and prior to April this year, it was just a simple case of keeping the bike in the garage and perhaps ending your insurance until you are ready to use it again.  The new rules in the United Kingdom however mean that bikers who would have previously done this now either need to keep their bike insured throughout the year or declare it SORN while it is not being used.

Here are some of the points you need to know:

  • If you’re fully taxed and insured you don’t need to do anything until your tax and insurance run out.
  • If you’re taxed and uninsured (even if you’re off the road) you must either insure your vehicle or make a refund application with a SORN declaration to DVLA.
  • If you’re not taxed or insured you must make a SORN and keep your vehicle off the road.
  • If you’re not taxed but are insured you must make a SORN and keep your vehicle off the road.

Failure to insure your bike without declaring SORN means bikers could face a court prosecution and up to £1,000 fine.

To combat this, MotorCycle Direct and Sorn Insurance have been working together to provide a new Laid Up Fire & Theft bike insurance policy which allows bikers to avoid SORNing a bike while its safely stored away but still insured at a lower cost.

Bikers (and car drivers) can find out more about the policy at www.Motorycledirect.co.uk and get online quotes, allowing them to consider which method is most suitable for them, whilst complying with the law.

This post has been written by Josh Evans of Motorcycle Direct for UK France bikers.com

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

French and British bikers join protest ride to Brussels

Bikers from various member states of the European Union (EU), including France and the United Kingdom, have joined a massive ride to the EU headquarters in Brussels to protest at proposed European measures designed to prevent bikers from servicing their own bikes and forcing them to book a service with a registered mechanic.

The bikers made their own way to Brussels and gathered outside the Auto World Museum before riding en masse to the European Parliament where MPs and other relevant politicians were invited to hear the bikers’ concerns over the proposals.

Many bikes are currently equiped with an on-board diagnostic system to enable their owners to easily identify a fault, but under the new proposals, new bikes would be equiped with systems that only dealers can decipher.

We see this as yet another attempt by the authorities to treat bikers like cash cows although home or self servicing has always been a practice as long as bikers have the knowledge and expertise to do so. Not only British and French bikers joined the protest ride to Brussels but also bikers from many other European countries including Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Italy and Spain. The ride demonstrates the on-going and strong unity and determination of bikers across the EU who will fight against any authority that dares to compromise the freedom that they have always enjoyed and fails to recognise the many benefits that motorbikes and scooters can bring to the environment.

This is the first time where hundreds of French and British bikers joined forces and expressed their anger at proposals that could potentially compromise the future of motorcycling in Europe. “L’entente cordiale” as many Brits call it has never been so strong between the two nations, at least among the bikers. Let’s see what the EU has to say now. Stay tuned, UK France bikers.com will keep you informed of the developments.

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

French politicians caught speeding

At a time when the French government is taking draconian measures to stop motorists and motorcyclists speeding in France, some French politicians have recently had a taste of their own medicine with one of them losing his driving licence.

Jean-Paul Huchon, President of the Greater Paris area (which doesn’t give him much power by the way) was caught going down the motorway on 23rd October 2011 at 171 kph instead of the maximum allowed speed of 130 kph. That is 107 mph instead of 81 mph. Huchon lost his driving licence straight away making him unable to drive until further notice.

The French government has been installing speed cameras everywhere in the country in an attempt to catch as many motorists and motorcyclists as possible breaching the speed limits. Thousands of angry motorcyclists, represented by the very famous and well respected French motorcycle action group (Fédération Française des Motards en Colère), have been protesting en masse all over the country at the government’s decision to hide those speed cameras and remove signs warning road users of their presence in the affected areas. But unfortunately for Mr Huchon, the law is the law and politicians, unlike what most of them believe, are not above any legislation. They might in fact have a taste of their own medicine to see what it is like being caught. At least Huchon has accepted his mistake and said “the law applies to all citizens. It applies to me. I was not paying attention to the speed I was going at“. If all politicians were as honest as him, politics would be much more straight forward, wouldn’t it?

It is not the first time that a politician gets caught speeding in France, although it is the first time as far as we can tell that a politician sees their driving licence taken away from them. As stated on an article from news.motorbiker.org, “Xavier Bertrand, the Minister of Industry, got caught doing 140 kph on 90 kph limited road. José Bové, the “ecologist”, all-round thug and former farmer (known for his strong anti-globalisation and anti-USA views) got caught doing 135 kph in a 90 kph road”. The article continues saying that “even the current President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, does it. He got caught doing 190 kph on a 130 kph motorway, the former leader of the ultra-right political part, Jean-Marie Le Pen doing 185 kph on a 130 kph road, François Bayrou, leader of the centre party, caught at 120 kph on a 70 kph, stretch and former Presidential candidate Ségolène Royal was doing 158 kph on a 110 kph road. The current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alain Juppé, got caught doing 105 kph in a 90 kph zone”. We are not sure what sanctions, if any, were imposed on these politicians for their obvious breach of the French highway code.

If these guys get away with speeding, then what credibility and respect can we, road users, have for them?

Further reading (in French): Retrait de permis pour Jean-Paul Huchon contrôlé à 171 km/h sur l’A13

Further reading (in French): Contrôlé à 171 km/h, Jean-Paul Huchon se fait retirer son permis

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

100,000 angry bikers bring the French government to submission

Those of you who read or subscribe to this site will have been informed of the enormous protests that took place all over France in March, June and September this year, gathering up to 100,000 bikers and bringing the whole nation to a complete standstill (click here and here for further details). The angry bikers demonstrated their anger at the French government who have to date failed to make traffic filtering (lane splitting) legal in France and proposed to force all motorcyclists to wear high visibility fluorescent vests in an unfounded attempt to reduce the number of accidents on the roads and obviously fine as many bikers as possible who may fail to wear such vest.

Bringing France to a complete standstill three times this year has obviously not been very well perceived by the French authorities who now fear that if they continue to treat motorbikes and scooters like cars, they will see the country brought to a complete standstill many times again by thousands upon thousands of angry bikers. On three occasions this year, all cities and towns nationwide were blocked for hours by up to 100,000 bikers who expressed their disgust at their government’s continued attitude to treat bikers like cash cows by imposing on them the same measures as on cars, lorries, buses and coaches.

Claude Guéant, French interior minister, has today, unsurprisingly, decided to change his attitude towards the bikers and is now proposing to make traffic filtering (lane splitting) for motorbikes and scooters legal in France within the next few months. This is a clear victory for the angry bikers who, by demonstrating en masse and blocking the whole nation three times this year, have succeeded in bringing their government to submission. The exact date when traffic filtering will become legal in France is yet to be announced, but we are pleased to see that Claude Guéant has finally decided to listen to the bikers, although it is regrettable to note that the same bikers have had to use draconian measures to make their voice heard because of a deaf and narrow minded government.

Guéant still appears to be a little reluctant to abandon his plans to force all bikers to wear high visibility material. Although he is now saying that the use of a high visibility vest may not be compulsory, he still requires all bikers to wear some kind of high visibility material (such as a strap around the arm for instance), but he now appears to be prepared to discuss with the bikers.

We very well know that Guéant had better make sure that he keeps his promises if he doesn’t want to see the whole of France brought to a complete standstill again by Christmas and by up to 100,000 bikers. He’d better make traffic filtering legal in France at his earliest opportunity and scrap his plans for the compulsory wear of high visibility material as soon as possible if he is not to upset the bikers again.

UK France bikers.com would like to take the opportunity to congratulate the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers) for their amazing tenacity and dedication in defending and protecting the rights of all bikers in France.

Further reading (in French) – Derniere minute: le ministre de l’interieur favorable a la circulation interfile

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

Paris: car pound or bike pound?

Motorcyclists in Paris have always enjoyed the right to park their bike on the footpath, as long as their machine does not obstruct the pedestrian right of way. The number of motorbikes and scooters in Paris have significantly increased in the last ten years, as Parisians now prefer to move around on two wheels which offer them a much more reliable, cheaper, faster and less polluting mode of transport.

With the ever increasing number of motorcycles in circulation in the French capital, and thus the ever increasing opposition of bikers to any newly introduced anti-bike legislation, the authorities now seem to be taking draconian measures against motorcycle parking on pavements, which has always been permitted (or, in fact, tolerated). In the last week or so, hundreds of bikers have found their motorcycle, initially parked on the pavement without obstructing the footpath, moved into the pound without any notice. Many of the victims, who assumed their motorcycle had been stolen, phoned the police and were told that their machine had been taken to the pound for illegal parking.

This comes of course straight after a series of enormous demonstrations where thousands of motorcyclists brought Paris to a complete standstill three times this year so far with more to come. Instead of listening to the motorcyclists and considering what they have to say, the authorities find it more appropriate (and amusing) to inconvenience them even more by treating bikes like cars and delibarately failing to recognise that motorcycles, if parked without obstructing the footpath, don’t cause any harm to anyone. Can we expect another bikers’ demonstration in Paris alone by the end of the year which may significantly inconvenience the authorities? We will find out and keep you posted…

The unfortunate bikers who have had their bike taken to the pound, not only had to travel (by public transport) to the other side of Paris to pick up their machine, but also pay a large fine on the spot to have their motorcycle returned to them. But that is not all… most of them found their motorcycle severely damaged and also had to pay hundreds of euros to have their bike repaired. Have a look at the photos below, they show how the authorities remove motorcycles from their on-street parking spot using car removal equipment, thus severely damaging the bikes! This is just incredible!

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First, if you want to park your bike in one of the dedicated motorcycle parking bays whilst cars, lorries or vans are illegally parked just outside the bay making it impossible for you to reach it, those blocking vehicles are delibarately not fined to encourage them to stay and force you to park on the pavement, where your bike will be taken away to the pound... This is pure racket!

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The bike is lifted with car removal equipment thus the risk of damage is extremely high... They lift the bike from anywhere, steering wheel, storage box at the back, front wheel, back wheel, absolutely anywhere, without worrying about the damage this may cause!

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Here we go again! Another bike is being lifted up without care and with car removal equipment...

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The bikes are squeezed against each other without care on a car removal truck. The bikes are not securely fastened thus keep moving around and scraping against each other during the journey to the pound...!

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Ready to go! Bikers, see you at the pound and don't forget your cheque book or debit/credit card! Also, be psychologically prepared to find your bike severely damaged!

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

France: A tsunami of angry bikers cause chaos again!

For the third time this year, France has been the scene of enormous demonstrations this weekend, where thousands upon thousands of angry bikers took over every town and city nationwide, a real slap in the face of the French interior minister, Claude Guéant. Facing a deaf government despite previous demonstrations on 18 June 2011 gathering almost 100,000 protestors all over the country, French bikers continue to express their radical opposition to a series of government proposals, designed by Claude Guéant, to treat motorcyclists like cash cows rather than recognise that motorcycles are the golden solution to environmental and congestion issues and also offer a cheaper, faster and more reliable mode of transport, especially for those in a weaker financial situation.

The angry bikers demand from Claude Guéant, their interior minister, the immediate implementation of measures designed to promote motorcycle training and awareness rather than solely focus on cashing in thousands of euros a day from bikers who may fail to adhere to anti-bike rules and regulations imposed on them without valid justification. Among others, the bikers have been protesting at the proposed compulsory wear of a fluorescent high visibility vest, which Guéant insists on being a measure designed to reduce the number of motorcycle accidents. The bikers have also been protesting at the continued ban on filtering through stationary or slow moving traffic, whilst their government stupidly expects motorcyclists to remain stationary in traffic jams, as if they were driving cars, lorries and coaches. The bikers are also angry at the proposed introduction of larger size registration plates in an unfounded attempt by the government to reduce the number of motorcycle accidents. The bikers have just had enough with the French government’s false excuses to push through money-grabbing measures rather than effective ones designed to improve the safety, awareness and training of all motorcyclists.

The Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers), through its highly effective network of branches all over the country, called all motorcyclists based in France and beyond to go down the streets and protest en masse on 10th and 11th September 2011, against the French government’s continued attitude to treat bikers like cash cows. As a couple of protestors said in the town of Limoges, where more than a thousand bikers took over the high street, “We will not tolerate to be treated like cash cows and adhere to legislation that is purely there to grab money from us. We will fight, continue to demonstrate and cause massive chaos all over the country until these short-minded and money-grabbing guys abandon their policies and listen to what we’ve got to say to them. If this is the only way we have to put our points across, then so be it”.

France was again brought to a complete standstill this weekend with 50,000 bikers blocking every town and city throughout the nation. Even the smaller size towns saw protestors invading their streets, such as 800 bikers in Niort, 1,000 bikers in Epinal (eastern France), 100 motorcyclists in the small town of Rodez, 600 in Angoulême, 500 in Bourges, 300 in Colmar. The bigger towns and cities were the scene of much larger demonstrations, including Lyon (France’s second largest city) where 3,000 angry bikers were counted, Toulouse 2,000, Strasbourg 1,500, Montpellier 2,800, to name a few. Paris saw the second largest demonstration after Lille with over 4,000 bikers riding through the capital and bringing the heart of the city to a complete blockade for hours.

Thousands of bikers took over the Paris peripherique (ring road) and caused enormous traffic jams! Treat bikes like cars and they'll behave like cars!

4,000 bikers riding through Paris and blocking the whole city centre!

Paris covered in smoke with thousands of bikers reviving their engines to show the government that they will stand up!

Bikers from neighbouring countries joined the demonstrations and showed support to their French cousins, including a number of bikers from the United Kingdom who crossed the Channel to join the largest demonstrations of the weekend in Calais, Lille and Dunkerque, attended by over 5,500 bikers. Before riding through the centre of Lille (France’s fourth largest city) and bringing it to a complete standstill, the angry bikers took over the A1 motorway and totally blocked it for a good hour. A large group of bikers also joined the Lille demonstration from Belgium, thus helping their British counterparts to mark the strong solidarity between bikers across the European Union.

We wonder how far the bikers’ actions will go until the French government capitulates, especially at a time when politicians are campaigning for the elections next May. Based on past experience, it is highly unlikely that the bikers will give up their fight, the government will eventually give up their money-grabbing policies if they don’t want to see the country brought to a complete standstill again and again.

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

Fancy joining 100,000+ French angry bikers from the UK? Here is how and when…

On 10th and 11th September 2011, a series of protests will hit France nationwide with 100,000+ angry bikers expected to bring the whole country to a complete standstill. On 18 June 2011, the French government had a feel for what the bikers were capable of and the same bikers will repeat their actions on 10th and 11th September, in response to a government that continues to adopt a “can’t see you, can’t hear you” attitude. Click here for more details on the demonstrations that took place all over France on 18 June 2011.

The angry bikers, called to protest by the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers), continue to oppose the compulsory wear of a high visibility fluorescent vest as a measure imposed by the French government to reduce the number of accidents involving motorcyclists. The bikers argue that the measure is a complete non-sense as accidents are largely caused by car drivers not watching out for motorcyclists on the roads and not being adequately trained to share the roads with them. The bikers also argue that the measure is proposed to enable the government to cash in thousands of euros a day from bikers who choose not to wear a high visibility jacket. The French government is accused of not being concerned about what bikers may wear underneath that high visibility vest for their own safety in case they fall off their bike. As long as they wear the fluorescent vest, that’s all what counts.

Fancy joining the fun from the United Kingdom?

For UK bikers who would like to have a feel for how their French cousins stand up against their government, there will be numerous meeting points all over France on the day. Simply turn up at one of those meeting points and follow the crowd! We believe it may be easier for bikers coming from the UK to join a group in the north of France. Below are some of the main meeting points, which are subject to change so we would advise you to keep checking this site before making any travel arrangements:-

10th September meeting points in north of France

Caen – Michel d’Ornano stadium at 2pm

Brittany – Kerampuille park in Cahaix at 11am (you are strongly advised to bring a picnic)

11th September meeting points in north of France

Calais – 9.30am outside the Calypso MC AMMC sports and leisure centre

Dunkerque – 11.30am at Place Jean Bart

Douai – outside the “start and go” at 12.30pm

Bouchain – Grand Place at 12.30pm

Saint-Omer – 10am at 23 rue du Lycee, outside “The Feeling”

Lille – 2.30pm at CRT Lesquin

And for those who don’t mind riding down to Paris, the meeting point is at 2pm outside Chateau de Vincennes.

Bikers are required to organise their own travel arrangements to France and must bring with them a valid passport, motorcycle licence and insurance certificate that covers them outside of the UK. Also, we would advise all UK bikers to keep an eye on their speed, especially on motorways and main roads, as we expect very high police presence on the roads on 10th and 11th September. Click here for further details on speed limits in France and the consequences you may face if you exceed those limits.

You may want to cross the English Channel by ferry or tunnel. Here are some useful links which may help you plan your trip:-

Sea France

P&O Ferries

Brittany Ferries

Eurotunnel

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Speeding in France: penalties and consequences for UK bikers

If your idea of biking in France is racing down a quiet autoroute at 100mph or 160kph, perhaps you should think again.

Although some roads elsewhere on the Continent have no fixed speed limit, and any penalties imposed might not have any impact on your UK motorbike licence in terms of points or future increases to your motorbike insurance premium, don’t kid yourself that breaking the laws of the road in France can be free of consequence.

No points… but no motorbike either

At the moment, any transgressions you make while on the road outside of Britain will almost certainly not be translated back into penalty points on your UK licence.

That does not mean, however, that the risks of speeding or otherwise failing to observe local motoring laws are minimal.

If police or gendarmes stop you, they will generally have the power to impose ‘on the spot’ fines and you face paying hundreds of euros depending on the severity of your offence.

Worse still you could lose your motorbike: police in France have the right to impound your vehicle if you are travelling more than 50kph (roughly 30mph) above the limit. Exceed the permitted rate by 40kph (25mph) and your licence could be confiscated.

What are the limits?

In built-up areas, a limit of 50kph applies in France; on motorways, the maximum is normally 130kph (around 80mph) but when it’s raining, the maximum allowed is 110kph (around 68mph).

Getting away with it?

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) in the UK has reciprocal agreements with fellow motoring agencies around the European Union, which means that you can be identified and contacted by any police force which has a record of your registration plate, for example from a speed camera.

If you do receive such a fine in the post, you will be entitled to challenge it in the same way you would a UK charge, but clearly this is likely to be a more complicated process.

Legally speaking, however, a fine such as this cannot be enforced in Britain in the same way as a UK issued fine: foreign authorities cannot ask the British judiciary system to help them get their money.

Implications for your motor insurance

Should you tell your insurer about any foreign speeding fines when your motorbike insurance policy comes up for renewal?

AA spokesman Ian Crowder says the answer may technically be yes, but that doing so could prove difficult. “A motoring offence that takes place outside the UK can’t easily be declared on your insurance renewal,” he explains.

It is worth checking the small print on your policy to see what your insurer’s view is on disclosing speeding fines: if in doubt, give the company a call to explain what has happened.

Jamie Gibbs of Confused.com, with which UK France bikers.com has recently entered into partnership agreements, has written this post.

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

100,000 bikers called to bring France to a halt again

Like a few weeks ago, France will see another day of massive protests all over the country on 10 September 2011 with around 100,000 bikers expected to bring the entire nation to a complete standstill. The angry bikers, called to protest by the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers), continue to oppose the compulsory wear of a high visibility fluorescent vest as a measure imposed by the French government to reduce the number of accidents involving motorcyclists.

The bikers argue that the measure is a complete non-sense as accidents are largely caused by car drivers not watching out for motorcyclists on the roads and not being adequately trained to share the roads with them. The bikers also argue that the measure is proposed to enable the government to cash in thousands of euros a day from bikers who choose not to wear a high visibility jacket. The French government is accused of not being concerned about what bikers may wear underneath that high visibility vest for their own safety in case they fall off their bike. As long as they wear the fluorescent vest, that’s all what counts.

Will bikers turn up again like this on 10 September 2011? The government says that as long as you wear a high visibility vest, you're dressed appropriately for riding!

Just after the massive demonstrations that took place on 18 June 2011 all over France and gathered almost 100,000 bikers, Michèle Merli, in charge of France’s road safety and working closely with Claude Guéant – current French interior minister, announced on national radio that there had been a misunderstanding with regards to the proposed requirement to wear a high visibility vest. It took just a couple of days for the French government to step in and advise that there had never been a question of imposing a high visibility jacket on the bikers but rather a “little strap” that they would be required to wear around their arms (as if these were enough to improve the visibility of motorcyclists and protect them from injuries in case of an accident). It was laughable to see how quickly the French government responded to the bikers following hugely embarrassing demonstrations which made the first page of the motorcycle press internationally.

Claude Guéant, French interior minister, continues to treat motorcycles like cars by banning traffic filtering (lane splitting) and forcing all riders to remain stationary in traffic jams, as if they were driving cars. Not to mention Guéant’s proposal to force all bikers to change their registration plate for a bigger one, as if this had an impact on reducing the number of road accidents involving motorcyclists! The bikers are just fed up with being imposed ridiculous measures that are purely designed to cash in thousands of euros a day in fines from motorcyclists willing to use a mode of transport that guarantees zero congestion, considerably reduces pollution and offers a more affordable solution to those facing financial difficulties.

10 September 2011 will definitely not be a good day to visit France as enormous delays on all major roads nationwide will be caused by the angry bikers, who will bring the whole country to a complete standstill, like they did on 18 June 2011. Riders from the neighbouring United Kingdom who wish to join the demonstrations in France and support their French cousins can do so by disembarking in Calais and joining a protest group nearby (don’t forget to take with you your passport, motorcycle insurance certificate and licence). We will post further details nearer the time to enable UK riders to plan their trip to France.

Thousands of high visibility vests took fire all over France at the last demonstrations on 18 June 2011. Will the angry bikers do this again on 10 September?

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

Dress inappropriately and fail your motorcycle test

"Come back another day wearing appropriate bike clothing", says the examiner!

As of 1st July 2011, an examiner who considers that a candidate for the motorcycle test is not wearing the appropriate clothing for riding might decide not to go ahead with the test and ask the candidate to come back for a retake. The Driving Standards Agency (DSA) in the United Kingdom has recently issued strict guidelines to advise learner motorcyclists that if they turn up for the test dressed inappropriately, examiners have the right to cancel the test straight away and send candidates back home.

Whilst, as far as we are aware, there is no legal obligation for riders to wear protective clothing when using Powered Two Wheelers (PTWs), most training centres teach learners what to wear for their safety and make them aware of the various hazards and their consequences, especially in case they fall off their motorcycle. The DSA now considers that wearing adequate clothing while riding a motorbike or scooter is of paramount importance and reserves the right not to examine candidates who turn up inappropriately dressed for their test.

At UK France bikers.com we tend to agree with the DSA’s recent announcement, although there is no legislation that forces riders to wear specific pieces of clothing. We consider however that given the number of scooter riders we see on the roads throughout the UK wearing flip flops, no motorcycle gloves and leaving parts of their body uncovered (blaming the summer’s hot weather for instance), training courses should emphasise the importance of wearing adequate protective clothing. One accident is enough to make these riders realise the paramount importance of wearing protective clothing while riding a PTW.

The DSA is not asking candidates for the motorcycle test to wear the most expensive or the most protective leather jacket or pair of trousers available on the market. However, the DSA requires a minimum standard of clothing to be worn to ensure that candidates are given a chance to be examined. Below is an extract of the guidelines issued by the DSA to all candidates for the motorcycle test:-

Guide to suitable clothing

As a general guide the following is an indication of the minimum level of clothing acceptable:

  • motorcycle boots
  • sturdy footwear or boots that provide support and ankle protection
  • textile or leather motorcycle trousers
  • heavy denim trousers
  • heavy denim jacket with several layers underneath
  • textile or leather motorcycle jacket
  • motorcycle gloves

The following are examples of clothing that are not acceptable:

  • lightweight training shoes
  • canvas basket ball trainers
  • any form of clothing with areas of exposed skin
  • shell suit or lightweight tracksuit
  • distressed ripped jeans
  • lightweight fleece or hoody
  • no gloves or skiing gloves

So here you go. If you are about to take your motorcycle test or thinking about becoming a biker, you are strongly advised to leave your Sunday suit or skirt in your wardrobe and wear something more sensible for riding, although strictly speaking, we believe that there is no legal requirement that dictates what you should wear whilst riding, a part from a helmet. Don’t forget that a well known tip to pass a test or an exam is to impress the examiner, so make sure that you give a positive impression right from the start!

Source: DSA reminds motorcycle test candidates to wear suitable clothing

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

ANY_CHARACTER_HERE

Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

British bikers stand up against European anti-bike measures

Like their French counterparts a couple of weeks ago, British bikers gathered yesterday in Birmingham, UK’s second largest city, to protest at a series of anti-bike measures proposed by the European Union (EU), of which the United Kingdom is a full and permanent member state.

Among those measures, which are designed to bring extra cash to the national government of each member state, we could soon see all bikers across Europe having to wear high-visibility fluorescent vests, as well as banning the same bikers from servicing their motorbikes and scooters themselves, thus forcing them to have the job done by a registered mechanic instead. Those who currently service their bike themselves, including changing brakes, tyres and replacing defective parts, could soon be facing fines and prosecution under European rules if they fail to bring their motorcycle to a registered mechanic. Motorcyclenews.com report that Engine Control Units (ECUs), which govern fuel supply, could become sealed to prevent tampering, and exhausts could get bolts and could only be removed by dealers with specialised tools, according to the Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations (FEMA). All new motorbikes and scooters over 125cc will have ABS from 2017 under the plans, while smaller models will have to have either ABS or linked front and rear brakes.

MAGMotorcycle Action Group, a leading UK based motorcycle pressure group – organised yesterday a UK wide demonstration in Birmingham to show the EU politicians who are trying to push through the above measures (among others) that British bikers, along with their French neighbours, will stand up against them until these vile attacks on motorcyclists across the EU are totally abandoned. Whilst France and the United Kingdom each have their own domestic issues (such as for instance a ban on traffic filtering / lane splitting in France and the unpopular introduction of a motorcycle parking tax in central London by Westminster City Council), anything that is Europe driven will be fought against in a united manner across borders.

This biker is wearing a high-visibility vest - that's all they need according to the proposed European legislation!

It was interesting to see how forcing all bikers to wear a high-visibility vest was perceived in the UK compared with France. Bikers in both nations seem to be totally opposed to the idea on the basis that the proposed legislation fails to consider what protective clothing must be worn underneath that vest to ensure the safety of all riders. Like in France a couple of weeks ago, a few riders turned up at the demonstration yesterday wearing what politicians consider to be absolutely legal across the European Union (see left). Could we say that those politicians have just not got the slightest clue about riders’ safety or would that be an under-statement? If a candidate turned up for module 2 of the motorcycle test dressed like the rider shown on the left and made absolutely no mistakes during the test, would the examiner have grounds to make the rider fail the test just because of their clothing?

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Further reading:

Riders urged to join high-vis demo

The end of home servicing?

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

ANY_CHARACTER_HERE

Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

France completely paralysed by almost 100,000 bikers !

UPDATE – 21 June 2011:

Further to the bikers’ demonstrations that took place last Saturday throughout France and paralysed the entire nation (read below), Michèle Merli, in charge of France’s road safety and working closely with Claude Guéant – current French interior minister, has made herself heard on national radio. According to Ms Merli, it would appear that the bikers have totally misunderstood the proposed obligation for all to wear a fluorescent high visibility yellow vest! Ms Merli has said that it has never been a question of wearing that vest but rather propose (not impose?!) to the bikers that they wear a little yellow strap around their arm so that they can be better seen by motorists. According to Ms Merli, that only costs 3 euros, so certainly everyone can afford it! UK France bikers.com believe that it is not the bikers who have misunderstood the latest government’s proposals but rather the French government who continue to severely misunderstand and under-estimate the safety of riders. As if wearing a little yellow strap around one arm, and no obligation for bikers to wear appropriate protective clothing, was indeed going to make them more visible on the road and, more importantly, protect them from injuries in case of accident. The FFMC (French Federation of Angry Bikers that organised the massive demonstrations all over France reported below) has urged all bikers in France to stay tuned and get prepared for another series of paralysing demonstrations all over the nation in no later than September unless, of course, the government abandons their proposals by then! UK France bikers.com is committed to support the actions of the FFMC by keeping all our readers around the globe informed of the developments. Stay tuned!

UK France bikers.com is the only website that is solely focused on motorcycle news in France and the United Kingdom, all in english.

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ORIGINAL POST – 18 June 2011

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France has today seen the largest motorcycle protest ever seen before with almost 100,000 bikers paralysing the whole nation, from north to south and west to east. A real slap in the face of Claude Guéant, French interior minister, who has been trying to push through a series of ridiculous proposals designed to treat bikers like cash cows when, let’s recognise it, bikers are willing to use a mode of transport that guarantees zero congestion, considerably reduces pollution and offers a more affordable solution to those facing financial difficulties. 100,000 bikers paralysing the whole nation, what a massive humiliation for the French government and its interior minister, Claude Guéant.

Claude Guéant continues to treat motorcycles like cars in France by banning traffic filtering (lane splitting) and forcing all riders to remain stationary in traffic jams, as if they were driving cars. The same Claude Guéant is trying to push through the obligation for all riders to wear a fluorescent yellow high visibility vest without worrying about what they may wear underneath. They may wear absolutely nothing underneath that vest, it doesn’t matter, as long as they wear it, and never mind if they fall off their bike and severely hurt themselves! Claude Guéant is not concerned about safety, after all why would he, as long as he sees the French government cashing in thousands of euros per day from motorcyclists who fail to follow his silly rules, then he’s happy. Not to mention Guéant’s proposal to force all bikers to change their registration plate for a bigger one, as if this had an impact on reducing the number of road accidents involving motorcyclists!

Bikers in France are just fed up with Guéant’s stupid proposals and his “I can’t see you, I can’t hear you” attitude, to the extent that almost 100,000 of them have today standed up against their government and paralysed the whole nation. The Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers), through its highly efficient network of regional and local offices, organised demonstrations in every single city and town across the country. Each town and city was brought to a complete standstill for hours with the local population being totally unable to move around. Paris alone saw more than 15,000 bikers blocking the heart of the capital, Lyon (France’s second largest city) saw more than 10,000 bikers, Lille (in the north of the country) counted more than 7,000 angry motorcyclists, Toulouse (in the south-west) was totally blocked by 8,000 bikers, Marseille and Bordeaux (in the south-east and south-west respectively) were also paralysed by 3,000 bikers each. Thousands of bikers blocked central France with 3,500 of them in Clermont-Ferrand, the whole of Brittany (in the north-west) with more than 3,000 bikers in Brest, Quimper and Rennes. The east of the country was also brought to a standstill with more than 6,000 bikers protesting in Strasbourg, Mulhouse Reims and Metz. Smaller towns were also the scene of protests with 600 bikers each in Niort and Dijon, 400 in the beautiful and historic town of Carcassonne, 700 in Perpignan, 900 in Poitiers and 500 in Auxerre, to name a few. Not only the bikers protested in mainland France but also in a few of its overseas territories including the island of Reunion (located off Madagascar and Mauritius) with almost 2,000 bikers, the islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe in the Caribbean and also some bikers gathered on the island of New Caledonia (located off Australia and New Zealand).

15,000 bikers ride en masse through Paris blocking the city centre.

10,000 bikers ride en masse through Lyon blocking the city centre.

Despite the pouring rain that fell over most of France today, the 100,000 bikers still went ahead with their protests to express their disgust at Guéant’s proposals. Claude Guéant has so far refused to listen but will he now listen to tens of thousands of bikers who have clearly proved to him that they have the power to bring the whole country to a complete stop? Let’s not forget that France is less than a year away from the next presidential elections, so will Guéant stand on the safe side and finally listen to the bikers if he is not to lose his position in the next government? The FFMC has clearly stated its intention to organise further similar demonstrations in no later than September if Guéant’s proposals are not abandoned immediately.

LET’S ALL GIVE A MASSIVE ROUND OF APPLAUSE TO THE FFMC AND ALL THE BIKERS IN FRANCE FOR THEIR DETERMINATION TO STAND UP AGAINST THEIR GOVERNMENT !

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15,000 bikers outside the French government headquarters in Paris!

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15,000 bikers take over the Paris ring road (peripherique) in both directions! Cars, keep out!

 

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The bikers block central Paris for hours!

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The bikers block the famous Concorde square in central Paris

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15,000 bikers protest outside the French government headquarters in central Paris

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The angry bikers ride through central Paris making it a car free zone!

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The angry bikers continue their protest through central Paris

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Mr Guéant wants all bikers to wear a high visibility vest... without worrying about what they may wear underneath that vest for their safety. So some angry bikers from the town of Valence had a feel for what riding almost naked is like! These bikers are riding legally since all they are required to do is wear a high visibility jacket! Some French politicians will never cease to amaze us with their level of absurdity!

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

ANY_CHARACTER_HERE

Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

France to introduce bike registration plates that exceed all sizes !

Last week, we exposed on this site one of the most stupid pieces of legislation that we had ever come across, which consists of forcing all bikers in France to wear a high visibility fluorescent vest in an attempt to reduce the number of accidents involving motorcyclists. The government hopes that by making bikers more visible on the roads, but also by failing to dispense adequate training and awareness courses to both bikers and car drivers, road users will drive or ride more safely and help reduce the number of accidents. According to the headless chickens that govern France nowdays, as long as the bikers wear a high visibility jacket while riding, they can be totally naked underneath that jacket and still ride safely and legally (click here to read last week’s post).

Well, unfortunately that was only part 1 of the story because the same French authorities have also come up with plans to force all bikers to replace their registration plate for a bigger one to make it more visible… again in an attempt to reduce the number of accidents involving motorcyclists. How can a larger registration plate help reduce accidents?

Get yourself stronger glasses, Mr Guéant, these ones are obviously not strong enough for you!

Claude Guéant (left), French interior minister, is the one who has come up with yet another stupid idea that is only there to catch hundreds of bikers a day who ride bikes with registration plates that don’t comply with the new regulations. Can you see how the French government is only interested in ticketing bikers rather than investing money in training road users to indeed reduce the number of accidents? By forcing all bikers to change their registration plates, can you imagine the amount of cash the government is about to collect as a result? And that’s what they want from the bikers, their hard earned money, that is! It doesn’t make any sense to impose a new size of registration plates for the sake of reducing the number of casualties, so how can the French government be so naive and think that the bikers are going to accept this non-sense spin?

The Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers) has been organising enormous protests in all cities and towns nationwide to not only express their anger and disgust at their government who keeps coming up with money-grabbing tactics such as the one above, but also to protest at their government’s inability to introduce effective measures to increase safety and motorcycle awareness among all road users.

Is this plate big enough for Mr Claude Guéant, French interior minister? Can he read it or should he pay a visit to the opticians to get a stronger prescription?

In a recent protest in the town of Troyes, a number of bikers turned up with the largest registration plate one can possibly imagine (left) to ask the government whether it is big enough for their stupid and blind eyes. “Is this registration plate large enough for you, Mr Guéant, or do you want it to be even larger so that you may be able to clearly see it?”, shouted the angry bikers while demonstrating en masse and causing chaos on the roads during rush hour. “Perhaps Mr Guéant should pay a visit to the opticians more often and be prescribed appropriate glasses to correct his poor vision, that way he would be able to read the details on the existing registration plates!”, shouted other furious bikers along the way.

What about this one, is Mr Guéant able to read or is it still not big enough for him?

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A series of demonstrations are currently taking place all over France with a massive and enormous national protest scheduled for 18th June 2011, which is expected to be attended by more than 100,000 bikers nationwide. We can expect to see the whole nation brought to a complete standstill by the bikers, as we have seen it many times before! Do you fancy a trip to France to see for yourself how the French behave when they are angry? Don’t forget to bring with you a large registration plate such as the one shown above to find out whether Mr Guéant’s vision is good enough to read foreign registration plates!

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

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If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

Fancy a bike ride almost naked? Then visit France and enjoy!

Do you consider this biker's clothing appropriate for riding? Well the French Government says yes it is!

We have just come across the most incredible piece of legislation that could be imposed on the French bikers soon if they don’t fight against it right now. Let us reassure you right from the start – you cannot (yet) ride your bike totally naked but you can do so almost totally naked! The French transport authorities have announced plans to force all bikers to wear fluorescent yellow high visibility jackets (left) in an attempt to reduce the number of accidents involving motorcyclists. But the same authorities have not come up with any requirements for the bikers to wear specific clothing underneath that high visibility yellow jacket. Therefore, a biker who is keen to wear nothing underneath that fluorescent vest is perfectly entitled to do so, the only requirement being to wear that vest and make it totally visible.

It is strongly believed among the French motorcycle community that these latest proposals are only designed to issue a higher number of tickets by catching hundreds of bikers a day who fail to wear a high visibility jacket. The government claims that by making bikers more visible, the number of accidents involving motorcycles will decrease. The Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers) argues that the proposals are only there to, once again, make more money out of bikers, as it is not by wearing fluorescent vests that the number of accidents will significantly reduce. It is rather by offering more practical training to both bikers and car drivers to raise awareness of each other on the roads that the number of accidents may indeed fall.

Thousands of bikers bring Paris to a complete standstill while car drivers applaude them for what they're doing!

The proposals clearly show a complete lack of understanding of the principles of motorcycling. Whilst the French government is stupid enough to believe that by forcing bikers to wear fluorescent vests the number of accidents will simply reduce, the same government totally ignores the danger of not wearing the appropriate protective clothing while riding. By focusing on what one can see as opposed to what one must wear, the government doesn’t really care about the physical harm that an accident can cause to the body of a biker. As long as you wear the yellow vest, then you’re riding legally – but nothing tells you what you are required to wear underneath that yellow jacket. You are basically allowed to wear whatever you like, even nothing at all if you wish to!

Thousands of motorcyclists have joined the FFMC to protest at these stupid proposals that are yet another example of a public authority treating bikers like cash cows. No later than last Saturday (21st May 2011), more than 4,000 motorcyclists took over the streets of Paris, with many of them riding their bike with a yellow vest and nothing underneath, just to prove their point. Did one get arrested and fined by the Police? No is the answer, because as long as you wear that vest, you behave within the law. As Mr Jean-Marc Belotti, representative of the FFMC in Paris said, “one can ride naked, as long as you wear the yellow vest, you risk absolutely nothing: this is indeed the solution to reduce the number of fatalities on the roads, isn’t it?!”. And Jean-Marc continues: “dressed like a clown (yellow vest and short), I can ride a motorcycle and yet remain within the law. Wearing the yellow vest is a non-sense, the problem on the road is not that we [bikers] are not seen, it’s that we are not being watched out for”. At the end of the protest, the bikers gathered on the Trocadero square in central Paris and put fire to the thousands of yellow high-viz jackets that they had been wearing to show the government that these vests are not wanted and are not the solution to the problem. The bikers demand more training and awareness courses to improve their safety on the roads. We do not know however whether the bikers ended up totally naked after they had taken their high-viz jacket off…!

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Thousands of bikers are preparing a massive fire of high-viz jackets! Oh no, they are about to annoy Ms Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, the French ecology minister! Never mind, after all, she wants bikes out of city centres, so shame on her!

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Thousands of yellow high-viz jackets take fire in central Paris! The bikers say "death to these stupid proposals"!

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A series of demonstrations are currently taking place all over France with a massive and enormous national protest scheduled for 18th June 2011, which is expected to be attended by more than 100,000 bikers nationwide. We can expect to see the whole nation brought to a complete standstill, as we have seen many times before! Do you still fancy a trip to France? If so, don’t forget to bring a yellow fluorescent vest and… yourself underneath!

We wonder for how many more years, if not decades, we can expect to continue to see France governed by headless chickens.

Update 29 May 2011 – If you think this particular piece of legislation that the French government is trying to push through is one of the most poorly thought you have ever come across, then come back to this site soon because our next post will show you an even more stupid and useless measure that the French government is trying to impose on the bikers! Stay tuned.

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If you’re based in France and want to take part of the fight against the Government’s proposed introduction of a compulsory annual environmental and road safety test for motorcycles and their continued policy to ban motorcyclists from filtering through traffic, then contact the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC – French Federation of Angry Bikers).

Si vous habitez en France et souhaitez participer aux manifestations contre la proposition du gouvernement d’introduire un controle technique pour les 2 roues motorises ansi que de continuer a empecher la circulation inter files pour les motocyclistes dans les embouteillages, contactez la Fédération Française des Motards en Colère (FFMC).

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Please join and support the campaign to stop Westminster Council from stealth taxing motorcyclists to park before their scheme spreads all over the UK and the rest of Europe. For further details, visit http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

Rejoignez le groupe de manifestants contre le stationnement payant des motocyclistes a Westminster avant que cela ne se propage dans le reste du Royaume-Uni et l’Union Europeenne. Pour plus d’informations, consultez http://www.notobikeparkingtax.com/

ANY_CHARACTER_HERE

If you have a story you would like to see published on UK France bikers.com, please contact us here.

Si vous avez une experience a partager et que vous souhaiteriez voir publiee sur UK France bikers.com, n’hesitez pas a nous contacter en cliquant ici.

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