Road Safety Crew Co-Leads: Sasha Olsson and Stephen Graham
Road Safety accompanies the Riders from Toronto to Montreal promoting and supporting their safety on the road. Specifically, we mark the route on a daily basis, carefully monitor the route and riders, assist and cheerlead to encourage our riders, assess and repair their bikes, and initiate requests for any medical assistance.
Our responsibilities fall into two distinct categories: bike repair and road support.
Road Safety Mechanics travel in pairs, along the route, in either a van or on bikes, to assist riders with mechanical issues. The mechanic van stops at break points throughout the day and makes trips to local bike shops to replenish supplies.
Road Support Crew, ride in vans and on motorcycles. Their various responsibilities include marking the route with arrows and flags, running the route to keep in close touch with the Riders, and managing critical spots along the route to ensure the Riders remain on track and that they are able to safely negotiate problematic areas. Depending on their mode of transportation and what duties they have been assigned on any given day, some additional requirements and expectations may be required of the Road Support team.
General Requirements for all Road Safety Crew
All Road Safety Crew:
- have a valid G class or motorcycle driver’s licence
- are able to read maps and communicate navigational information effectively
- are able to perform all of the duties and responsibilities of their position and prepared to work, on average, a 10-hour day
- have good interpersonal skills to work well one-on-one with crew and riders, within a team setting, and in close quarters with a van partner
- are able to commit the necessary time required prior, during and at the end of the Rally
- behave as ambassadors for the Bike Rally and for the Toronto People With AIDS Foundation
Expectations of All Road Safety Crew Members
Prior to the Rally:
Our Road Safety Crew
- are expected to fully participate in several mandatory training sessions, and regular/monthly team building socials; and
- participate in packing day activities relating to preparing and checking vehicles for supplies required on the Rally.
During the Rally:
Our Road Safety Crew
- are expected to perform all of the duties of their positions;
- conduct themselves in a professional manner relative to their responsibilities;
- are punctual for daily 7 a.m. meetings;
- are respectful of other Crew members and Riders, and co-operate with their co-leads;
- are accessible by phone, at all times during the day;
- return to Toronto on the Sunday morning after the Rally with other Crew members and vehicles; and
- once back in Toronto, participate, with all other Bike Rally Crews, in unpacking and storing bikes and supplies, and in returning vehicles to various rental agencies.
Bike assessment and repair services are provided by four of our Crew who are highly skilled professional bike mechanics.
In addition to the general requirements of all Road Safety Crew, the Bike Mechanics have a unique set of required qualifications and responsibilities.
- have bike shop experience and meet current certification standards;
- have good interpersonal skills to work with Riders and Crew in a team/event environment;
- are available for team building socials prior to the Rally;
- assess and repair bikes at breaks, lunch, and at the campsite at the end of the day including acquiring supplies along the way;
- provide encouragement and morale support to the Riders they are assisting;
- provide bike pumps and support (excluding repairs) to Riders each morning after breakfast before departure from the campsite;
- are available by phone throughout the day to deal with any mechanical emergencies on the route;
- are prepared to work, on average, a 12-hour day;
- are available for a planning and orientation session prior to the Rally, if required; and
- participate in ongoing events such as theme days during the Rally.
Road Support is handled by Road Safety Crew driving either in vans or on motorcycles.
The Crew in vans are paired and ride together throughout the Rally sharing the roles of both driver and navigator. Each day, van teams are assigned either to route marking or to route support.
Van Teams Performing Route Marking Duties
Van teams assigned to route marking, set out in specially equipped vans, mark the route for the following day, and return to camp in the late afternoon. They are physically able to repeatedly get in and out of the van throughout the day to mark the route.
As Route Markers, the Crew:
- drive the route for the following day identifying all locations where riders will require direction based on guidelines and training (in some circumstances, they may be required to use their own judgment);
- mark the route with flags and chalk/painted arrows as per guidelines and training;
- exercise patience, discretion, and sensitivity at all times and particularly in times of stress and fatigue, with your van partner and members of the public;
- maintain communication with your Crew Co-leads to discuss all route changes/issues, and of your progress along the route throughout the day; and
- meet at the end of your assigned workday, with your Co-leads, to advise of any problem areas along the route for the following day (e.g., road conditions, construction, route changes, etc.) and are prepared to discuss these changes at the next morning's crew meeting.
Van Teams Performing Route Support Duties
The remaining van partners are given route support assignments for the day. They monitor the route, assist Riders on the roadside, cheerlead, provide direction and safety advice, and keep the Road Safety Co-leads informed about requests for bike, rider or medical assistance and any other issues affecting the ride.
Van Teams providing route support are required to:
- 'run the route' monitoring Riders, road conditions, the progress of Riders and communicate information to other Crew Members and the Co-leads;
- provide safety and directional information to Riders at critical locations as assigned daily;
- interact, cheerlead and provide support to Riders along the route;
- assess Riders having physical, mechanical, or medical issues along the route, offer assistance, request additional support as appropriate, and notify Co-leads;
- direct Riders around locations where any notable incident has occurred;
- rotate into Route Marker assignments as needed;
- maintain their vehicle in an orderly fashion equipped with a Road Safety binder, food, ice, water, bike pumps, bike rack and a Road Safety Bin complete with all required contents; and
- exercise patience, discretion, and sensitivity at all times, particularly in times of stress and fatigue, with all Rally participants, especially your van partner, and with the public.
Motorcyclists are required to provide their own motorcycle and be responsible for any supplies and the related costs other than gas. Our motorcyclists 'run' the route with the Riders keeping an eye on rider health and safety, cheerleading, and also keep the road safety Co-leads informed about requests for bike, rider or medical assistance and any other issues affecting the ride.
- monitor road conditions, Riders and their progress and communicate information to the Co-leads;
- assist in managing unexpected problem spots on the route;
- at times, may be required to assist with Road Support assignments; and
- in cases of emergency, may be required to enter a bike path.
Lots of volunteers are needed to make the Friends For Life Bike Rally a success.
Last Updated on Saturday, 02 February 2013 23:24