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78th ABW/Safety Office

Motorcycle Safety6/6/2008 - With gas prices nearing $4 a gallon, many commuters are turning to motorcycles as an economical means of transportation.With more bike riders on the roads, the need for safety is vitally important.

Motorcyle riders must adhere to several safety practices required by Robins policy. 78th Security Forces personnel will enforce requirements and could refuse entry on base. 

-- Wear a helmet and other protective gear:

Protective gear serves three purposes for motorcyclists: comfort and protection from the elements; injury prevention; and a means for other motorists to see the motorcyclist, through the use of color or reflective material

Helmets: This is the most important piece of safety equipment. Safety helmets that comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 218 save lives by preventing or reducing the extent of head injuries in the event of a crash.

Eye Protection: Since many motorcyclists don't have windshields, riders must protect their eyes against insects, dirt, rocks, or other airborne matter. Even the wind can cause the eyes to tear and blur vision, and good vision is imperative when riding. Choose good-quality goggles, glasses with plastic or safety lenses, or a helmet equipped with a face shield.

Proper clothing: The only upper outer garments authorized for motorcyclists on Robins are a brightly colored upper outer garment during daylight hours and a reflective upper outer garment for nighttime or dusk.

Contrasting colors are no longer an option, and vests are strongly recommended.

Wearing a backpack is authorized only if it has brightly colored/reflective properties.

Jackets must have long sleeves and be made of heavy-weight, durable material like leather or denim. Riders must wear bright colors and a reflective vest.

Gloves: Durable gloves must be a non-slip type to permit a firm grip on the controls.

Footwear: Proper over-the-ankle footwear must be worn. 

-- Never mix motorcycles and alcohol.

Alcohol affects those skills essential to operate a motorcycle - balance and coordination. Alcohol and motorcycling are a deadly combination. Nearly 45 percent of all fatal-motorcycle crashes involved alcohol or drugs in 2005. 

-- Make sure that your motorcycle is road-ready.

Check your tire pressures to make sure they are set correctly. You should also inspect your motorcycle for loose chains, and make sure that the clutch, brake and other control positions are set correctly. 

-- Receive required training

According to Robins policy, all military personnel must accomplish Motorcycle Safety Foundation training prior to operating a motorcycle on- or off-base, on- or off-duty. All civilian personnel must accomplish MSF training before they operate a motorcycle on-base.

From online registration to new training range sites, the motorcycle and ATV training courses at Robins have been revamped to provide a better service to riders.

Riders on base must carry an approved motorcycle rider's course completion course. In addition, squadron commanders or equivalent must conduct one-on-one counseling with individuals who ride motorcycles.

Security Forces will continue to do spot checks to ensure riders are adhering to all safety practices, especially during the 101 Critical Days of Summer.

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