Bike Virginia Event Safety Program is Multi-pronged Approach
Bike Event Planning
Bike Virginia’s 5 full time staff spend 14 months or more planning for a tour. During that time safety is the number one priority in route and facility selection. We employe a full time Event & Community Outreach Director, and a full time Health & Safety Coordinator. Our staff work with local EMS, Law Enforcement, Department of Transportation, and Health Department officials to consider every aspect of the event.
Our bike routes are hand selected and pre-tested before every event. During this planning process we consider factors such as traffic patterns, number of left hand turns, line of sight, lighting, road condition, upcoming road maintenance, etc…
As the event approaches, in April prior to the June event, we use a team of paid staff and volunteers to completed a Preview Ride. During this period we test every route at the same time of day and same day of week as the event to make sure we are fully aware of road conditions and traffic patterns.
During the event we use minute by minute adjustments to respond to any problems that arise on the route. In past events routes have been rerouted due to traffic, weather, construction, even during event operations. Our large staff and volunteer group work tirelessly during the event to responding to changing factors.
Signage teams place visible marking arrows the morning of the ride. During their signage process they evaluate many aspects of safety and employ a variety of signage techniques to address potential problems.
Rider Involvement- Safety Briefing and Pledge
Bike Event Safety Policies
We have stringent ride policies and have taken an aggressive position critical aspects of safe road riding in groups.
Here are some of the rules:
- Riding “aero bars” is not allowed the presence of other cyclists.
- Pace line riding is not allowed at any time.
- Front white blinking light and rear red blinking light required at all times (day time included).
- Helmets required at all times when on the bike (even around camp).
- Children under 12 must ride on a bike with an adult unless special access is granted in writing.
This is not a complete list of rules. Please see the Rider Manual for more information.
During the months of planning Bike Virginia’s annual event we work with local organizations to create a broad reaching Share the Road campaign. We notify newspapers, radio stations, local churches, local business, and other facilities which have the most likely interaction with our bike routes. Each year over 200 letters are sent to such organizations containing the dates, times, and location information to help prepare drivers adjust to roadway impacts which might be felt due to the presence of the event.