Keesler rides safely on two wheels

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Greg Biondo
  • 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
Motorcycle season is here and the 81st Training Wing safety office hosted the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's basic rider course, Apr. 11 - 12, to keep team Keesler riders prepared.

The two-day course gives riders a hands-on approach to safely operating a motorcycle through a series of exercises and a riding evaluation.

"As a new rider, this course teaches you the basic skills needed to operate a motorcycle," said Master Sgt. Jedadiah Moss, BRC instructor. "Throughout the course you become familiar with where all of your controls are located and how to use them. Every exercise builds on what was learned in the previous lesson and in the end you are tested in a controlled and safe environment on what you've learned."

Riders need to provide their own motorcycles and safety equipment. A helmet that meets or exceeds the Department of Transportation standards, a long sleeve shirt or jacket, long pants, over the ankle boots, full finger gloves and eye protection if not integrated in a full face helmet are required.

While the course is meant for beginners, even experienced riders can benefit from the curriculum as a refresher, especially if a rider has purchased a new motorcycle or switched types of motorcycles, according to Moss.

Keesler also offers more advanced courses as extra training in addition to the BRC.

"The Basic Rider Course II is a follow-up course to the beginner's course and should be completed 60 days after, but no more than one year after the BRC is completed," said Tech. Sgt. Michael Farmer, BRC instructor. "The Military Sportbike Rider Course and the Advanced Rider Course, geared towards operators of cruisers and touring motorcycles, are also offered."

Farmer points out, the Gulf Coast is a great place to ride, but comes with its own set of unique challenges for riders.

"Sand, pedestrians and traffic on highway 90 are the main things riders should pay attention to," said Farmer. "The metal grates on the local bridges can also make for an interesting few seconds while riding across them. The course addresses many of these situations, and allows for expansion on each subject."

For more information about the motorcycle safety courses offered on base, contact your unit motorcycle safety representative or the wing safety office at 228-377-7031.

The instructors would like to remind all base personnel to stay off the motorcycle range when a course is in session. New riders can become target fixated and collide with pedestrians. The range is marked and bordered by parking blocks. This is for the safety of the rider and pedestrians.