Health & Safety

September 6, 2013

Freedom comes with risk, responsibility

Motorcycles are a means of transportation; they move a rider from one place to another just as cars, trucks and sport utility vehicles do. Motorcycles are also a gateway to a culture that embraces the freedom of the open road that can only be appreciated by other riders. Exposed to the elements without the confines of metal, plastic and glass, riders are a breed unto themselves — and they know it.

Riders also know riding comes with risks. A well-known saying in the cycling community goes: “There are two types of riders — those who have gone down and those who will go down.” In other words, those who have crashed, and those who will crash if they ride long enough.

It’s no surprise that motorcycle riders wish to avoid accidents. Those freedoms riders enjoy also mean less protection in the event of an accident. Relatively minor injuries, such as a badly sprained ankle resulting from a motorcycle accident, can often result in months of physical therapy and wearing support braces; or the injury may never completely heal and cause mobility issues later in life.

Master Sgt. Brian O’Leary, Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command, was recently charged with taking over up the company’s motorcycle safety program. A veteran with 20 years of riding experience, he has seen what can happen to Soldiers without the right mentoring and emphasis on safety. He recounted a time in Fort Drum, N.Y., when he found out two of his Soldiers had motorcycles — only after visiting them in the hospital.

“One challenge for leaders is getting the Soldiers to admit they have a motorcycle,” O’Leary said. “A lot of Soldiers don’t want to go through the extra inspections and supervision that come with riding.”

Not only is there extra supervision and inspections, Soldiers must also complete a progressive training regimen. They must complete a basic rider safety course before operating a motorcycle; and then they must take an advanced course within a year. There is also the requirement for sustainment and refresher training.

“Progressive training reinforces the techniques for safe riding,” said Jeff Speer, NETCOM Safety Office. Speer adds that riding skills are perishable, even when one rides regularly. People take short-cuts and develop habits when riding, sometimes leading to complacency and unnecessary risk-taking.

Those factors tend to result in motorcycle accidents, and continue to be a source of concern for leaders Army-wide.

“As a commander, my primary concern is that we as leaders are ensuring that our most trusted resources — our Soldiers, civilians, contractors, and Family members — are protected,” said Capt. Robert Vandenberg, Headquarters Company commander. “The establishment of a motorcycle safety program helps promote and foster an environment of safe motorcycle use for riders both on and off duty. Every leader and Soldier must be committed to and actively involved in the prevention of motorcycle accidents.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Gabrielle Kuholski

Antiterrorism Exercise assesses installation readiness, reinforces important relationships

Gabrielle Kuholski First responders with the Fort Huachuca and Whetstone Fire Departments work together to get a wounded Soldier into an ambulance during the full scale exercise, Apache Warrior 2013, Tuesday. These first respon...
 
 

Labor Day Safety Message

Labor Day marks the traditional end of the summer season and celebrates the American worker and the contributions they make to our great country. I want to commend you on your efforts to control heat injuries through another hot summer. Your diligence and care for teammates contributed to an overall 20-percent decrease in accident fatalities...
 
 
Gabrielle Kuholski

VA clinical psychologist raises military sexual trauma awareness

Gabrielle Kuholski Michael Moore, Ph.D., military sexual trauma coordinator at the Southern Arizona Veterans Affairs Health Care System in Tucson, presents a session on military sexual trauma, or MST, in the Murr Community Cent...
 

 

Glass recycling now available in Sierra Vista

SIERRA VISTA – Clean glass bottles and jars can be dropped off for recycling at the new Sierra Vista Glass Recycling Depot as part of the city’s trial glass recycling project. The Glass Recycling Depot, located in the parking lot of the Pedro Castro Government Maintenance Center, is a glass collection point that is separate...
 
 
Maranda Flynn

FH Community Spouses’ Club accepting new members, shares plans for coming year

Maranda Flynn Fort Huachuca Community Spouses’ Club board members, Katrina LaDue and Lesley Hocker, (left foreground and background), assist new club members, Dana Edwards and Sandi Weishaupt, (right foreground and background...
 
 

Retiree Council shares news, notes Did you forget to care for your Family?

No one forgets to care for his or her Family on purpose. It just happens – more often than one might think when it comes to the military Survivor Benefit Plan, or SBP. Most often, retired Soldiers don’t know the federal law and the time limits it imposes on maintaining their SBP elections. If a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin