Motorcycle safety course prepares global trainers

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Dillon Parker
  • 502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs
Motorcyclists from military bases around the globe converged on Joint Base San Antonio-Medina Annex May 12-24 for a train-the-trainer workshop.

The workshop trained eight new trainers and 10 new rider coaches. Rider coaches helped Department of Defense members with the initial member training required to ride a motorcycle on military installations, while the trainers are able to train new rider coaches.

“We send the trainers [on temporary duty] to go out and train more rider coaches DOD wide,” said Arthur Albert, the Air Force Motorcycle Safety Manager. “Having trainers saves us a lot of money, because rather than sending 12 people somewhere to become rider coaches, we can send out one of our trainers to train 12 new rider coaches at a base or wherever needed.”

Opportunities for personnel to travel from different units and bases and train at one location is very rare added John McLaughlin, Motorcycle Safety Program manager for JBSA.

“The last one of these was about three years ago,” McLaughlin said. “This is a huge event for the Air Force, but even after the eight new trainers are added, we’ll still only have 12 Air Force wide.”

Even though trainers and rider coaches are so rare, they are extremely vital to the safety of DOD personnel, McLaughlin said.

“It’s absolutely crucial to get training if you’re going to ride a motorcycle,” McLaughlin said. “You’re more than 35 times more likely to get killed riding one than you would be in a car.”

Albert echoed this sentiment explaining how the training helps riders stay as safe as possible.

“This training has saved me numerous times,” Albert said. “We teach that you need a constant emphasis on safety when riding a motorcycle, you need to pay close attention to environmental factors and your personal protection equipment. Even the smallest mistakes can be life threatening, so risk management and situational awareness are crucial.”