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Old 08-10-2014, 11:24 PM   #1
panhead_pete OP
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Joined: Jul 2012
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Safety Thread

I realize that may not be to everyone's taste but was thinking it might add value to capture in one place what people are doing to manage their safety when out riding, whether it a day or month+. Seems there is quite a bit of info posted but normally it gets buried in threads where its not easily found, particularly when using the search engine on here :)

So without further ado what electronic devices are you using and do you like them? What other things do you put in place, particularly if you are traveling solo or in small groups. What can you share to help make what we do safer? Im not talking about changing what we do, just improving the chances of getting home in one piece.
More gear and still no idea.
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:15 AM   #2
The Bigfella
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I carry a SPOT 2 and a phone. I also use a Garmin Montana.

I have a satphone, but don't carry it very often now. I probably should, as I often ride alone, but I try to minimise weight carried.

I like the SPOT - I don't bother to set it up to record my tracks these days, but it lets my family see where I am. I have, on a couple of occasions, SMS'd my wife to check my location on the SPOT and, ahem, tell me which direction it was to civilisation (eg in Gunung Leusur National Park, in Sumatra, approaching dark.... with a white screen showing on the GPS).

I also generally carry a Notebook computer (except day rides) with digital service and parts manuals on it.
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:16 AM   #3
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Pete, it's all been done b4
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:33 AM   #4
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Location: Lake Macquarie , NSW, Australia
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I started out this Adv riding caper with just my Telstra blue tick analogue 3 G phone . It didn't take me long to find out that what Telstra claimed and what was reality on the ground out West , was 2 different things . I had an issue on the second major ride I did , I did not have service on the phone and I had used up my spare 21 inch tube and got another flat . Easy solution was I rode my 640 for about 20 km with a flat front tyre till I had phone service to call the cavalry to rescue me , would have been a lot different if I was unable to move the bike , this set me thinking about the issues around my safety while riding .

I purchased a GME Acusat PLB so if I was in dire straits I could get some assistance provided I could activate the unit . This did me for a long time .

After I got married , my wife wanted to know that I was safe and approximately where I was most of the time , so before going on a longish solo ride in May last year , I bought a Spot 2 , this helps keep my wife feeling comfortable while I am away as she has a readily viewable screen to see just where I am and knows I will set off the help function if I feel I need assistance .

If I am going into a hyper remote area I will carry a Sat Phone , either a borrowed one or a hired one . I have a mate who owns one and has offered the use of it , but he does do a fair amount of remote area travel , so may want to use it when I am in need of one . Last time I went out into the Desert I hired one in company with my 2 ride buddies and shared the cost .

I also use a UHF on rides where it will be an asset , like crossing the Simpson and on rides where dust is an issue if you regroup regularly .
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Old 08-11-2014, 03:17 AM   #5
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I have a spot 2, most of my riding is out of mobile range. I set it off when I broke my collarbone on a Vic High Country trip and got myself a free helicopter ride. A fellow traveller had a satphone which was basically useless, no reception unless it was facing the right direction. And we were on top of the hill. I know this doesn't apply to all satphones, but the spot was much more useful in this case. And the added bonus of the missus knowing which pub the bike is parked at.
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:53 AM   #6
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103, Take 5 and a SWMS before riding...??? Hopefully there is a SWP for the activity I'm about to undertake otherwise I am in trouble. Do I have the correct PPE?? Too much safety focus in my workplace. Leave the safety nazis there. Gear up and ride.

Oops wrong thread lololol
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:03 AM   #7
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Terrific thread pete,i got a sticker with cpr stuck on underside of helmet peak,i have done first aid courses etc but think in heat of moment i would not remember the cpr steps,sticker is a fantastic baseline that could possibly make a big difference.I got a riding mate who is a paramedic and he said sometimes a injury can cause you to go into shock and have breathing issues etc and cpr can help in some cases.

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Old 08-11-2014, 05:11 AM   #8
panhead_pete OP
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Thanks Johnno. Great hint.

I have these on my bikes, cable tied to the fork legs above the bottom triple tree and one in my wallet.

If I organise a ride request those coming along to have them. Stoked to have never had to call anyone.
More gear and still no idea.
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:54 AM   #9
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Location: Mornington Peninsula Vic Australia
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I carry a Satphone, Epirb and 5w Uhf, wife also has a set of maps and where I am going.
I also put a log in with AMSA, this is usually
Quite comprehensive. Any major detour I will contact my wife and advise. Do this either via normal phone or satphone. Eventually I will adda Spot 3. I am also first aid qual and understand trauma associated with road crash type injuries. However all good if it's not me. My view is to go well prepared and stick ro contact routine. I check in each night and we have a cintingency if contact is not made.
My only concern if riding alone is if I am not in a dtate to make the contact, hence saving for Spot 3.
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Old 08-11-2014, 01:34 PM   #10
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Great initiative Pete. I normally ride by myself and get into some fairly remote areas. I have thought carefully about the self preservation situation and dress accordingly. I have often considered "what if I broke an ankle at the bottom of that big hill all by myself". So for me I have purchased the best protection I can get - Sidi Crossfire boots, chest protector, back protector, Rallycross jacket, knee braces, neck brace etc. If I bin it I should have a better chance of walking away. That coupled with a spot 3 and GPS.

Unfortunately my mate JB broke his back on a recent ride. Luckily we were on the top of a range (Cambridge Plateau) and I was able to get phone reception and use GPS coordinates for the chopper, otherwise it would have been a long wait on the side of the track for JB while I rode ahead to civilization! Now if that was me hurt all by myself and could not get phone reception!! I guess in reality it isn't all that smart being out alone without some sort of sat phone...

I have found riding slowly also helps.

Cheers - Ron.

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Old 08-12-2014, 03:35 AM   #11
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Its not just what you carry but where you carry it,for those who ride alone.
On a recent trip one in our group binned it, landed away from the bike with what we now know was a serious neck injury and broken ribs.
Poor bugger could barely move with the pain,which got the rest of us thinking around the fire later.
It's no good having the PLB/Spot on your bike or in your camel back if you can't reach it when it all goes to poo.
PLB went in jacket pocket after that.
He's on the mend and will be ok thankfully.
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Old 08-12-2014, 03:53 AM   #12
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Might sound weird. ..but

I spend money on good suspension set up.. In an effort to reduce fatigue and the risk of an incident.

I slow down a notch or two when riding alone.
I tell someone where I am going and when I should be home.
I keep my phone on me and in the same pocket all the time so in the event I come off I can reach my phone. (Assuming I am capable and have service. .I rarely ride alone when remote)

I have more recently considered a spot and or epirb type device...

Simpson Trip 2008

Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO - what a ride!"
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Old 08-12-2014, 04:20 AM   #13
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Like others who ride alone, I have GPS, Spot tracker and Telstra next G phone and UHF. When with mates, they appreciate the spot tracker and all say that they have to get one of their own.

As well as a GPS, know where you are going. A map is a good idea.

As already said, when riding alone, ride appropriately.

And the gear - neck brace, armour, knee braces and good boots. Level of gear relating to level of risk, you know, isolation and terrain.

Of course the bike must be in A1 condition.

Great lights are important for if you are inadvertently caught short of time at the end of the day

All of these point together make for more relaxed riding and as the OP said, home in one piece.
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Old 08-12-2014, 06:00 AM   #14
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The one thing a spot will do that nothing else will. It will give your location if you are not capable of setting of an alarm. Provided you have tracking turned on.
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Old 08-12-2014, 06:53 AM   #15
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Please record your preferred emergency contact as ICE (In Case of Emergency) in your phone's directory: that's what Emergency Services look for if we find a non-responsive patient.
If you have a MedicAlert, please wear it on a break-away necklace around your neck, rather than on your wrist: if you lose your hand, you lose your MedicAlert; if you lose your head, you don't need your MedicAlert...
"I would like to die on Mars; just not on impact." Elon Musk
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