Motorcycle riders may at times feel like an afterthought. After all, everything from infrastructure and poorly maintained motorcycle lanes to a lack of roadside assistance appears to agree with that notion.
Well, not anymore. Last month, Allianz General Insurance Company (Malaysia) Berhad (Allianz General) introduced free roadside assistance for motorcycle comprehensive (below 250cc) policyholders via the Allianz Road Rangers, the Company’s free-of-charge accident assistance.
Allianz General Chief Executive Officer Sean Wang revealed that the Company’s introduction of the roadside assistance service for motorcycles means that riders have everything to gain with heightened value-added service.
The service, provided to Allianz Motorcycle Plus (Comprehensive) and Allianz Motorcycle (Comprehensive) (below 250cc) policyholders nationwide, includes emergency towing assistance (free for up to 50km, round-trip), fuel delivery, battery, and flat tyre service.
“We have all seen motorcycle riders left stranded or worse, involved in an accident, and every single time, it is fellow riders that are at the scene offering assistance. Now, with our roadside assistance services, our riders know that come rain or shine, we will be just a phone call away,” said Sean at the Crash, Boom, Bang! Part II #RogerAllianz Media Roundtable - The “Little Guys” and The Big Picture Behind Roadside Assistance for Motorcyclists.
“As an insurer, we should be there for our customers. It is as simple as that. While many operators have shunned away from such a service simply for not being financially lucrative, sometimes, there is no harm in giving a little more. This is our way of saying thank you to our customers and letting them know that we are here for them in times of need,” added Sean.
Allianz General introduced its Allianz Road Rangers service for motor comprehensive policyholders in the Klang Valley 2017, a first within the general insurance industry, before taking the service nationwide in 2018.
Taking a leaf out of the existing Allianz Road Rangers service, Allianz General Head of Claims, Damian Williams said the Company outlined scenarios in which a rider can benefit from the roadside assistance prior to developing its customer journey for motorcycle riders.
On top of being grossly underserved, motorcyclists also suffer the most accidents and fatalities in Malaysia. According to the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) statistics for 2020, while road accidents dropped by 26 percent last year, largely due to COVID-19 movement restrictions, the country still saw 418,237 road accidents and 4,634 fatalities, with most accidents involving motorcyclists with 3,118 deaths.
Guest panellist for the media roundtable, Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS) Director of Road User Behavioural Change Research Centre Azhar Hamzah, revealed that on average, motorcycle accidents stood at around 20 percent, but motorcyclists and pillion passengers were most affected in terms of injuries, with more than 60 percent deaths each year. Azhar also quoted a recent PDRM statistic which indicated that the highest percentage of motorcycle deaths at 36 percent, involved riders aged 16-25 years old.
Azhar also shared how riders can minimise the probability of getting into an accident using basic practical guides.
• Be fit to ride. Refrain from riding when you are tired, and if you are unwell, opt for other modes of transportation.
• Observe the appropriate speed limit and traffic rule. Stop at red lights.
• Be aware of possible hazards at junctions or curves.
• Use a daytime running lamp (DRL) in the daytime and a reflective vest during the night.
• Avoid blind spots the best you can.
• Use the special or designated motorcycle lanes whenever possible. Keeping apart from other road users have proven to work in lowering the probability of accidents.
• Keep to your service schedule. A well-maintained motorcycle is key to keeping the rider safe.
• Ride carefully when on highways and trust in your riding skills.
“While users (80.6 percent), the environment (13.2 percent), and vehicle (6.2 percent) are the three main factors involved in accidents. The changing of behavioural habits and heighten awareness of safety is the quickest way to get rides to be safer on the roads. Simple, doable changes such as speed control, adhering to traffic rules like stopping at red lights, and just overall riding etiquette can make a huge difference,” said Azhar.
“Motorcycles provide very little physical protection. So, for injury prevention, personal protective equipment (PPE) like wearing a proper-fitting, SIRIM-approved helmet can safeguard the head on impact while, riding jackets and closed-toe footwear can help reduce injury risks such as abrasion. These are readily available items that riders should consider incorporating into their ride to keep themselves safer,” added Azhar.
To learn more about the new Allianz General’s motorcycle roadside assistance service, visit Allianz Road Rangers.
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