Guernsey

Guernsey motorbike safety course may end, warns minister

Guernsey compulsory basic motorcycle training at La Mare de Carteret High School
Image caption Only five people can be trained at a time at La Mare de Carteret compared to 10 at the previous site

If problems with Guernsey's compulsory basic motorcycle training cannot be solved it may have to end, the environment minister has warned.

Currently anyone wanting to book a place faces a four-month wait.

The delay has been caused by the move of the course from Les Beaucamps High School to a smaller area at La Mare de Carteret High School.

Deputy Peter Sirett said if a bigger suitable site could not be found they may have to discontinue the course.

He said: "If it reaches the point where people literally are unable to book CBT tests then maybe we've got to look at whether we'll have to carry on with this compulsory basic training.

"From a road safety point of view I'd hate to see that happen because I believe the youngsters who go through CBT are out on to the roads much better prepared than they would be if they hadn't been through the process."

Impossible to know

The Environment Department has also received calls to change the current system, under which the department issues provisional licences, which are then validated when the person has completed their compulsory basic training.

Until the training has been completed the riders are not allowed to drive on the roads.

Ian Lavenne from Duques Garage said licences should only be issued once the training had been completed so it avoided any danger of misinterpretation of the stage at which a bike could be taken on the road.

The Environment Department said there were currently 1,772 provisional motorcycle licences, which were issued for two-year periods, in the island.

The department said 500 people had taken CBT courses during 2011, where as the figure was normally nearer 650, but it was impossible to know how many of the remaining licence holders were riding a motorcycle unlawfully.

It said the current delay in gaining a licence was not an excuse to break the law.

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