Free checks and advice offered for Gloucestershire motorcyclists
Free checks and advice are being dished out for motorcyclists to keep them riding safely through the winter.
Severn Advanced Motorcyclists (SAM) is the Gloucester and Severn Valley motorcycle group of the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).
It says as the clocks go back this weekend and the autumn chill begins to bite, many motorcyclists traditionally put their beloved bikes away for the winter.
But it says with soaring fuel prices and ever increasing road congestion, there is no reason why bikers cannot enjoy their machines throughout all but the severest of winter months.
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SAM members, who meet on the second Tuesday of the month at the Wall's club in Gloucester, are offering a free winter observed check ride to any biker who would like to log on to their website and leave their details.
The ride will be conducted by a trained observer of the IAM, at a time and place to suit you, takes about 40 minutes and is completely free.
The only criteria is that you have a full motorcycle licence and a road legal bike to ride.
Spokesman Roger Wilkinson said: "The winter weather brings a multitude of extra riding skills needed to combat the county's roads, with increased hazard awareness playing an important role.
"For example, alert observation in contending with falling leaves, wet manhole covers and slippery road markings all contribute to ensure a safer ride to your destination.
"However, many riders overlook the two most fundamental aspects of safer riding, and that is themselves and their bikes. Misting visors and a lack of high visibility clothing in the inferior natural lighting conditions, can contribute greatly to the 'Sorry mate, I didn't see you' scenario in a collision.
"Give yourself a few extra minutes and have a good look at your bike before you ride.
"Look at the palm of your hand and think to yourself, 'That's about as much surface area as my tyres have on the road'. Try the suspension, check the bulbs, and test the brakes."