All of us at NSB HOG love to ride and have fun, and we take extra care to insure our members feel safe and comfortable on chapter rides.
We ride in staggered formation in one lane, maintaining a two-second separation from the motorcycle in front of you in the same track, and a one-second separation from the motorcycle in the lane’s other track.
Ride leaders (Road Captains) travel at or near the posted speed limit. When changing lanes, the road captain will communicate by turn signal, hand signal, and/or CB Radio and the group will change lanes by following the motorcycle in front of them – so from above, the group appears to be moving as a continuous ribbon or a “snake” as they move from one lane to the other.
We obey all traffic laws. Never ride through a red light — in addition to a Road Captain, all rides have a “Sweep” rider at the end whose job is to insure that if the group gets separated for any reason, or if someone has to stop, everyone will be reunited. Larger rides may also have an additional road captain (“Mid-Sweep”) riding in the middle of the pack to assist as well. In the interest of safety, the Road Captain may choose to split up groups exceeding 10 motorcycles into multiple groups.
On longer rides, we stop for breaks generally every hour to hour and a half, but if anyone needs to stop more frequently, just signal to one of the road captains.
Many of our members use CB radios on rides (generally we communicate on channel 1), and all of our road captains use them. While CB’s are not required, we’ve found that communicating this way helps keep all riders in the group aware of upcoming turns and lane changes, or any obstructions or other safety issues we may encounter on the road (not to mention, it’s a great way to let the road captain know you need an early bathroom break!).
All rides officially end at their destination, although often members will choose to return as a group or in groups. Let a road captain know if you need guidance or directions getting back if you’ll be returning by yourself.
As per HOG policy, consumption of alcohol or other intoxicants is prohibited before or during chapter rides for the safety of all riders.
While this is not intended to be a comprehensive list, we want to emphasize that the safety of our riders is of paramount importance. Everyone should “ride their own ride,” and not exceed their own comfort level or riding ability. If you notice riding conditions you feel are unsafe, please inform the Road Captain immediately. If you feel your concerns are not addressed adequately, please leave the ride and contact any NSB HOG board member or our dealer representative.
For additional information on safety and Florida motorcycle laws: