Road safety watchdog Reaction on Tuesday asked drivers to respect motorcyclists on Tuesday, after two young motorcyclists died in the capital within 24 hours.

“Unfortunately, two more young motorcyclists lost their lives on the road within a few hours of each other in Nicosia,” the traffic watchdog’s announcement said.

Mohamad Fateh Batsh, 30, died after a car collided with the motorbike on which he was a passenger, at around 3.30 pm on Monday on Dighenis Akritas Avenue, Nicosia.

The 34-year-old driver of the bike is being treated for a back injury at the hospital. His situation was said to be serious but not critical. No information was given about the state of 65-year-old woman who was driving the car.

Late on Sunday, another motorcycle accident led to the death of a 19-year-old boy on Iosif Hadjijosif Avenue in Nicosia. The second passenger, also 19, was said being treated for fractures and is in serious condition. Police said the teenagers, under conditions that are being investigated, hit an electricity pole.

“Motorcyclists are one of the most vulnerable drivers on the road network,” Reaction said.

Between 2011 to 2020, some 132 motorcyclists and their passengers were killed on the road.

According to the watchdog, in many cases drivers of motorcycles are not to blame for the accidents but pay for it with serious injuries or their lives.

The president of Reaction Marios Stavrou welcomed the initiative of Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos to organise meetings with various motorcycling groups to promote road safety.

“Motorcyclists know much better than anyone else the issues that affect them. It is an extremely important step for the improvement of the road safety for the motorcyclists,” he said.

The group reiterated to drivers that they must always check their side view mirrors before turning or before opening their car door and they recommended to keep appropriate distances from the motorcycles on the road. Motorcycles can easily be found in the blind spot of a car’s mirrors, Reaction said, because of their small size.

“Respect motorcyclists as well as all road network drivers. They all have someone waiting for them at home,” the announcement said.