How many more must die?

Lisa Taylor

Lisa Taylor

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THE mother of a teenager killed in a tragic motorbike accident today backed police action to prevent carnage on Fylde’s roads.

Lisa Taylor, whose daughter Lydia Taylor-Harrison died after coming off her boyfriend’s motorbike in Over Wyre, has offered her support for Lancashire Police’s BikeWatch operation, which will run throughout this month.

Nine motorcyclists – including four in Out Rawcliffe, Poulton, Hambleton and Catterall – were killed in Lancashire and 526 injured last year.

Now police are set to take to the skies as they work to reduce the number of biker casualties.

Chief Insp Damian Kitchen, from Lancashire Police’s Roads Policing Unit, said: “Motorcyclists account for just one per cent of traffic on our roads but 21 per cent of fatalities.

“They are vulnerable road users who often come off worse in collisions.

“Last year alone, nine motorcyclists were killed in Lancashire and 526 injured – 180 of them seriously.

“Operation BikeWatch will focus firmly on safety, with a great deal of educational work being done by ourselves and partner agencies, but inevitably there will also be some enforcement activity in casualty hotspots.

“We will be using a range of tactics – including using the force helicopter – and officers on patrol to prevent and identify bad riders and drivers.”

Miss Taylor-Harrison, 18, died on August 31 last year after being involved in a collision with a car while riding as a passenger on her boyfriend’s bike on Rawcliffe Road, Out Rawcliffe.

Her mum, Lisa, from Stalmine, said: “I support this campaign, I think it’s a good idea. The bikers who meet at the Knott End cafe every Wednesday work with the motorcycle safety group which is good.

“With my daughter, it was a pure accident. Nothing could have been done.

“Both Lydia’s boyfriend and the lady driver of the car only had two seconds to react – there was nothing they could do. It was an accident.

Airlifted

“But something I do think needs addressing is overgrown hedges, it’s something people need to be aware of in case it affects visibility.”

Just days before Lydia’s death, Brian McOwen, 53, of Holts Lane, Poulton, died when he came off his bike in Poulton and struck a Ford Focus travelling in the opposite direction.

The crash happened as Mr McOwen, who was the proprietor of the Happy Shopper on Holts Lane, was taking a left hand bend on Blackpool Old Road on August 28.

Stuart McKenzie, 26, from Preston, died on July 3 last year after he ended up on the wrong side of the A6 in Catterall while riding his Suzuki bike.

Mr McKenzie was airlifted to Royal Preston Hospital following the collision with a silver Mercedes C180 but was pronounced dead on arrival.

David Redman, from Preesall, died when his motorbike was involved in a collision with a car on the A588, at Hambleton on November 6.

The 50-year-old was the 11th person to be killed on the road – dubbed Wyre’s most dangerous – in the last 20 years.

And last month, Carl Green, 47, from Thornton, died after he was thrown from his bike in a collision involving a VW Passat on the A588 near Pilling on March 4.

More than 70 bikers were injured in crashes in Blackpool and Fylde in 2011 while there were 114 injured and four people killed while riding their motorcycles in Northern division, which covers Wyre.

The campaign will involve officers and volunteers from RideSafe BackSafe visiting bike meetings and dealerships to speak to riders and hand out road safety information.

Officers will carry out enforcement activity on routes popular with motorcyclists which are known to be casualty hotspots.

And the police helicopter will be used to keep a look out for bad driving when it is launched for other incidents so officers can intervene and explain riders mistakes.