View Full Version : Uneasy riders: Thai troops complain over new motorbike rules

6th October 2004, 00:13
The Thai army has come up with a new security solution for troops in its restive south: the back-to-front motorbike team. Soldiers riding pillion have been told to sit facing backwards to counter the threat of separatist gunmen in the kingdom's Muslim-majority south.

Despite complaints from troops about the awkward riding position and difficulties keeping the bike upright, Thai Army General Palangoon Klaharn said it would be much safer for the men. "If we ride backwards, it will more difficult to be attacked or if it happens, we can respond immediately," he said.

But soldiers have complained about the new plans, even after adjusting footrests to help them keep balanced. "The pillion seat does not support the backward position. It is also difficult for the driver to make a turn because on a motorcycle this requires the driver and passenger to coordinate a weight shift," Sergeant Major Withaya Meechalee was quoted as saying in the Bangkok Post.

The initiative follows security measures in the south that have included armour-plated sentry boxes which soldiers complained were too hot to sit in and the conversion of Thailand's famous three-wheel taxis into armoured vehicles.

21st October 2004, 17:56
Has any one here tried that?

21st October 2004, 18:45
I can see what the General is trying to achieve, but as the troops seem to be saying, and as you would imagine, it isn't the best execution of a plan I've ever seen. With all their gear on, the pillion would be just about falling off I reckon. The only safe solution I could see, which would however be quite a lot more expensive, is to fit sidecars to each bike, and have the "pillion" sit back to front in that.

That, or have the rider sit facing back, and the pillion steering under the riders arms :lol:

21st October 2004, 18:48
I think that is what side cars are for.... like how in WWII the germans have motorbike side cars with guns mounted on them.