'It's going to kill ya' - January spike in motorcycle deaths on Kiwi roads worries police

Police are urging motorcyclists to take extra care on our roads after a high rate of motorbike fatalities in the first month of the year.

Those killed on motorbikes made up close to a third of the total road toll for January, and it was a stark increase from a year ago.

In January last year, motorbike fatalities were 17 per cent of the month's death toll.

This January was close to double that at 29 per cent.

Emergency services are well aware of the hike and police say rider behaviour needs to change.

"We believe there has been some unnecessary overtaking or extra risks taken around getting to people's destinations," Assistant Commissioner for road policing Sandra Venables says.

And safety is also key.

"Wear the best safety gear that you can afford, if you get a slight knock on your helmet make sure that it gets replaced," Ms Venables says.

A keen motorcycle rider of many years, Clive Thomas believes the January death toll hike may be caused by an increase in inexperienced riders on roads not ideal for bikes in the first place.

"We've got roads where there's loose metal on corners, no signage to say there's loose metal there there's things they can do, and I know it costs money - but what cost is a life?" Mr Thomas says.

"You'll always get the odd person who does take risks.

"Unfortunately if you're on a motorcycle and you make a bad decision, it's going to hurt, or it's going to kill ya."

Ten riders were killed in January, sparking police to call for safe driving. Source: 1 NEWS