Written by Lt. Andrea Psimer
With Hawaii’s beautiful year-round weather, it is not surprising an eighth of Coast Guard Cutter Rush’s crew utilize motorcycles as their daily commuting mode of transportation.In light of the high fiscal year 2013 class “A” motorcycle mishap numbers and the publication of the 2012 Motor Vehicle & Recreation Off-Duty Safety Manual, the Rush’s motorcycle riders conducted a unit safety assessment and evaluation of compliance with motorcycle policies.
Chief Warrant Officer Michael Wren spearheaded the first “RUSH Riders” group consisting of 20 crewmembers of various ages, rates, ranks and riding ability from the enlisted and officers corps. The training proved effective as five crewmembers renewed their motorcycle safety cards by taking advanced rider courses offered at the local Navy base.
The group also organized a motorcycle safety day. The day began with refresher training, a pre-ride safety inspection of all participants’ motorcycles utilizing the Motorcycle Safety Foundation “T-CLOCS” inspection checklist and 35-mile ride to the North Shore for lunch. Eleven crewmembers were able to participate in the occasion with various motor vehicles including sport bikes, cruisers and one dual-sport.
“Coast Guard Cutter Rush’s Motorcycle Safety Ride was a great success in crew morale while emphasizing the continued need of safety using the T-CLOCS inspection checklist and proper personal protective equipment,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Brandon Robarge.
“This ride was another stepping stone in increasing the experience level which will consequently decrease the risk of a motorcycle mishap,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Carl Louis. “We tend to build complacency at performing the same task on a daily basis, such as putting on our safety gear, saddling our motorcycles and riding. This ride served as a reminder of why we check our vehicle before each ride, wear the proper attire and focus on basic riding skills.”
RUSH Riders are looking forward to another safety awareness day scheduled for June and continued safe riding by the crew.
The Coast Guard has free motorcycle training available for all members. For a list of Coast Guard motorcycle training ranges, the motorcycle training request form, and the motorcycle training member reimbursement program, see the Successful Motorcycle Riding webpage.