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News | Sept. 1, 2022

JTF-SD hosts mentorship motorcycle ride, emphasizes safety

By Ms. Bridget Bonnette Joint Task Force-Space Defense Public Affairs

If you heard any loud revving, it was our team. Members of the Joint Task Force- Space Defense participated in a mentorship motorcycle ride here, Aug. 22, 2022.

The mentorship motorcycle event was designed to cultivate and sustain a culture of responsible motorcycle riding within the JTF-SD.

This event marked the first overwhelmingly successful ride with increased participation since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, demonstrating momentum within the organization to begin riding more frequently as a cohesive team.

The JTF-SD aims to conduct more frequent motorcycle rides annually in order to ensure the safety of its riders as well as to ensure compliance with the Department of Defense Instruction 6055.4, “Motor Vehicle and Traffic Safety,” which outlines safety requirements for motorcycles that integrate risk management into techniques and training.  

The mentorship event allowed riders with various levels of experience to gather and foster a supportive environment to boost unit moral and cohesion, while simultaneously increasing individuals’ motorcycle safety skills.

The event also supported the education, training and development of a world-class orbital warfighting team, through a shared culture of mentorship, both on and off duty.

Research shows that motorcyclists are significantly overrepresented in traffic crashes and fatalities each year. In 2020, per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclists were about 28 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to die in a motor vehicle crash and were four times more likely to be injured.

As a previous Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) instructor herself, Jessica Rider, executive assistant of the intelligence directorate for the JTF-SD, stresses the importance of continuous training and education on riding safety.

“I have made it a personal cause to educate folks on DoD requirements,” said Rider. “Plus, gobs and gobs of research proves that continued structured training, such as MSF courses, reduces incidents.”

During this ride, participants endured a wide variety of riding environments to include extemporaneous rainfall.

“Our Space Troopers are the JTF-SD’s most valuable asset,” said U.S. Army Gen. Tom James, commander of the JTF-SD. “Keeping them safe is important, not just because taking care of our people is the right thing to do, but for their critical role in the security of our Nation. And, having fun while sharpening our riding skills is a good bonus.”

U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reminds vehicle drivers and motorists that safe driving and riding practices and cooperation from all road users will help reduce the number of fatalities and injuries on our nation’s highways.

For more information or facts about motorcycle safety, visit the following links: