Effectiveness of Antilock-Brakes (ABS) on Motorcycles in Reducing Crashes: A Multi-National Study

This study set out to evaluate the effectiveness of Antilock-Brakes (ABS) on motorcycles in reducing real-life crashes. Since the European Parliament has voted a legislation to make ABS mandatory for all new motorcycles over 125cc from 2016, the fitment rate in the entire Europe is likely to increase in the years to come. Previous research, however, analyzed mostly large displacement motorcycles. Therefore the present study used police-reported crash data from Spain (2006-2009), Italy (2009) and Sweden (2003-2012) in an attempt to analyze a wide range of motorcycles, including scooters, and compare countries with different motorcycling habits. The statistical analysis used an induced exposure method. As shown in previous research, head-on crashes were the least ABS-affected crash type and were therefore used as non-sensitive to ABS in the calculations. The same motorcycle models, with and without ABS, were compared; the calculations were carried out for each country separately. Crashes involving only scooters were further analyzed. The effectiveness of motorcycle ABS in reducing injury crashes ranged from 24% in Italy to 29% in Spain and 34% in Sweden. The minimum effectiveness with 95% confidence limits was 12%, 20% and 16%, respectively. The reduction of severe and fatal crashes was even greater, at 34% and 42% in Spain and Sweden, respectively. The minimum effectiveness was 23%-24%. The overall reduction of crash involvement with ABS-equipped scooters (at least 250cc) in Italy and Spain was 27% and 22%, respectively. The minimum effectiveness was 12% in Italy and 2% in Spain. ABS on scooters with at least a 250cc engine was found to reduce the involvement in severe and fatal crashes by 31%, based on Spanish data only. At this stage, there are more than sufficient scientific-based proofs to support the implementation of ABS on all motorcycles, even light ones. However, further research should be aimed at understanding the injury mitigating effects of motorcycle ABS.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: Appendices; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 12p
  • Monograph Title: 23rd International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles (ESV): Research Collaboration to Benefit Safety of All Road Users

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01571120
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 13-0169
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jul 13 2015 11:59AM