Taiwan is an amazing island where diverse cultures and amazing people gather from all over the world. I got the chance to discover this small island and its wonders for 3 years now. So far, my journey is full of peace and learning. At school or in my daily life, I came to discover another face of the island. That one is pictured by an intense traffic during the rush hours. Everyone seems to be in hurry either to go to work or go back home. I was particularly amazed by the scooter drivers and I thought from my first experience that it is dangerous.

My first experience of riding in Taiwan was in my university when after a football training session, I asked a Taiwanese friend to bring me back to my dorm. Since the soccer pitch is at the top of the hill - on which the University is located - and the dorms were just at its foot, we had to go all the way down with his scooter. Before we go, he made sure I wore the helmet properly and we both sat on his motorcycle. He was, somehow, in hurry and was driving so fast that I had to ask him to slow down. I think it is one of the most dangerous aspect of riding in Taiwan. The island does have a wonderful relief that could inspire all the fans of cascading and movies like “Fast and Furious”. But that is, for me, scaring. Although, I had a helmet I was not safe since the body protection should not be limited to the head. Fall at this speed could induce irreversible damages to the body and lead to paralysis of limbs, Coma, or fatal injuries of vital organs.

To ride safely, I think that wear only a helmet is not sufficient. Many people in Taiwan like to run fast. Many times, I see some riders on the streets at high speed and cascading without any helmet. Of course they are cameras everywhere to remind them that they could be caught but it is not efficient on my point of view.  Maybe, having agents to monitor the traffic could be more benefic and could avoid many drama. Moreover, the abuse of speed might provoke a lack of appreciation of distances, a consequence of the lack of attention.

Attention and being prudent are more important I think for all the drivers but for scooter drivers particularly. Attention can be altered if the rider is under influence of alcohol or prohibited substances. Everyone should know those simple advices while driving or riding to not risk their or others life. It is well known, all those information are taught during the license driving classes which are fundamental for everyone whiling to drive or ride a vehicle or a motorcycle. On my opinion, even bicycle users should have those classes. Although there are less involved into accidents in many countries, they could provoke accidents if the rider is not aware of the traffic rules.

Finally, I think that the Motorcycle, or the vehicle should be regularly checked.  Unfortunately, this can be responsible for accidents and must be taken into account to ride safely in Taiwan.  Earlier in Feb 14, it was reported that a tour bus was involved into a deadly accident in Taipei. Sadly, 33 passengers died on the spot and the age of the bus was suspected to be a possible reason of the outcome. Ideally the tour bus should be replaced every 10 year but that one had 19 years: 9 more than what is normally authorized.  Just like for tour buses, cars and motorcycle should be maintained and/or replaced to prevent drama. In fact, the older a car, vehicle or motorcycle is, the more problems it will have.