NEW ORLEANS --
Six Marines with the Marine Corps Support Facility New Orleans Motorcycle Safety Mentorship Program rode 123 miles between Thibodaux, Louisiana to Federal City, Louisiana, to raise awareness of the responsibilities required to operate a motorcycle on May 17, 2017.
During the ride the group focused on using the best safety practices, gaining experience and building comradery among riders. The Marines learned how to improve their cornering skills at various speeds, through turns that ran along the Mississippi River and the Louisiana Bayou. At around the halfway point, the Marines stopped at a diner to talk about their experiences, receive feedback on how to improve, all while enjoying the local food.
While the riding was fun, the lessons learned serve an important purpose.
Marines are involved in accidents every year, some of which are due to improper use of their motorcycle. The Motorcycle Safety Mentorship Program at MARCORSPTFAC is about teaching Marines how to properly ride a motorcycle.
Within the Marine Corps, motorcycle training guidelines exist to help new riders build a foundation needed to develop natural skills to become safer motorcyclists and to help experienced riders break bad habits.
“If we are able to reduce the chance of Marines being involved in a motorcycle accident, we are accomplishing the objective of the program,” said CWO4 Donald Freese, the president of the MARCORSPTFAC Motorcycle Safety Mentorship Program.
Marines interested in the program can contact their appointed training section to register. Once added, Marines will receive information about future meetings and group rides. Here at MARCORSPTFAC, it is mandatory for service members who ride motorcycles to register for the program and to attend the meetings.
“I send out my meeting and riding updates through email,” said Freese. “From there the Marines will attend the meetings where we will discuss different safety topics and go over the details of the next group ride.”
The group meets on the second Thursday of the month and rides on the third Wednesday of the month.
Marines interested in researching motorcycle policies can read Marine administrative messages 152/03, 482/04, 551/05 and 455/08.
By being a part of the mentorship program, Marines learn to be more alert of their surroundings and help each other to be better riders.