About Me

About Me

I have been riding scooters and motorcycles daily for 35 years. Originally from England, I am a member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists (Motorcycle), and have been actively involved in motorcycle training and safety for the past 20 years.

My current ride is “Bella”, my beloved Vespa GTV 250. It is featured as the main image in the banner of this blog.

I regularly ride a motorcycle (BMW R1150RT), but, given the choice, I head for the scooter first!

My hope with this blog is to do my part in making scooter riding safer, and to encourage the use of this eminently practical form of transport.

Alan Hearnshaw

Alan C Hearnshaw, EzineArticles Basic Author

Comments or questions are welcome.

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20 thoughts on “About Me

  1. I have a Vespa LX150 Fun to ride around my small town, which has an unusually large number of scooters because it is a major University town. I am not a student, rather at the other end of the age spectrum. Still fun to zip. Now I am looking for older riders to ride with. Glad to find a scooter site, and like the safety hints. And good to remember to watch for scoots and motorcycles when I drive my car (not all weather is conducive to scooters here in the Mid-West.

  2. Great site. Glad I’ve found it from the mention on MV. I ride a GTS 250 called, coincidentally, Bella. I’ve been riding a grand total of 1.5 years almost daily and find this blog extremely useful. Thanks

  3. Just found your site today and am enjoying it. How does the headlight on the fender perform compared to the headlight in the more common bar level? Any tougher to aim to get maximum lighting distance without annoying oncoming traffic due to the steeper angle? You may have covered all this and I just haven’t stumbled across it yet. If not, perhaps a topic for a future installment.

    1. Hi Leo. Very sorry for the late reply. I actually find the headlight on the GTV really good. I didn’t expect much from it myself, but was pleased to find that it does a really good job of lighting up the road. It lights the road better than my BMW motorcycle does!

  4. Alan, I very much enjoyed your safety presentation today at Vespa Marietta. Thanks for taking the time to put on this seminar. It was truly educational and helpful to keep me in the shiny side up mode.

  5. Hello! I am reading and enjoying your scooter site. I am a newbie, just purchased a Honda SH150i, and truthfully, I feel a little over my head with it. I am waiting to charge up the battery, and my helmet is on it’s way. Hopefully…Saturday!
    I have wanted this forever. There is no one in my life who rides, my husband is very nervous about it and the family thinks I’m crazy. But I want to do something fun, and this is it.
    The bike is heavy for me. That’s the most intimidating factor. But from what I am hearing its not about weight or strength. We’ll see.
    Anyway, thank you for the safety tips!

    1. Hi Scarlett. Thanks for commenting, and congratulations on the new scooter!
      As far as you feeling a little over your head, I think this is quite natural. Can I ask, have you had any kind of instruction so far? Are you considering it?

      To help your confidence, and to get you “off on the right foot”, you may consider taking the MSF course in your area. Although the course is designed for motorcycles, the only thing that differs is the actual controls on the bike (obviously, you don’t have gears to contend with).
      I believe that the MSF BRC (Basic Rider Course) allows scooters. They have also recently introduced a course specifically for scooter riders. http://www.msf-usa.org/scooterschool.cfm
      Although that course doesn’t end up with a license waiver, it should help get you started and, after all, it’s not the license we’re after primarily – it is to be safe.

      Don’t worry too much about the weight. As two-wheeled vehicles go, the SH150i is comparatively very light and, as you say, if you’re doing it correctly, it isn’t about weight or strength.

      Anyway, from here, all the advice I can give it to take it very steadily at first. Don’t try to do too much too soon. If that means three weekends in a parking lot before you actually take it on the road, then that is fine. There is no rush.

      I would also suggest reading reading the following sections of the blog in order:

      1. Back to Basics-starting your scooter: http://scootsafely.com/?p=538
      2. Steering: http://scootsafely.com/?p=902
      3. Braking: http://scootsafely.com/?p=313
      4. Balance: http://scootsafely.com/?p=46 (don’t try to do too much too soon)
      5. Following distance: http://scootsafely.com/?p=13
      6. Turn signals: http://scootsafely.com/?p=220
      7. Scanning and hazard fixation: http://scootsafely.com/?p=622

      Anyway, good luck. We’re all rooting for you. Please come back and let us know how you are getting on.

  6. Great site, your posts are very helpful! Hope you can write one about the gear you use for day to day riding and also for touring.

  7. Thanks for all the information. We should never stop learning.

    I’ve got a Vespa GTV also. Great scooters !!

  8. Scootering is so awesome!! I had a Yamaha Riva 200XC and no9w I have a brand new 2011 TMEC QT3 50cc scoot. What I have noticed while riding a scooter is the importance of making YOURself visible to other drivers. Lane positioning and paying attention to traffic conditions can ensure the scooter enthusiast many years of safe and economical motoring.

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