The Brampton Cycling Club (BCC) is insured for third party liability for all of our scheduled events. For details of insurance coverage and accident reporting procedures, see Accident and Insurance.
As an OCA affiliated club, we must conduct our activities in a safe and responsible manner by following certain guidelines and practices. Failure to do so could jeopardize our insurance coverage and seriously affect our ability to carry on our activities in the future. All our non-competitive club activities are covered by a Risk Management Policy.
Please take the time to review the responsibilities of the tour leaders and individual riders.
The designated tour leader is responsible for the proper conduct of the ride and has the final decision on all matters pertaining to the ride. Here are the leader’s responsibilities:
- During the week prior to the ride, post the intended route on the website’s event calendar page. Post any additional details, updates or cancellations directly on the schedule. At a minimum, list the destination, route and distance, plus any comments about the nature of the route. A link to an on-line map is optional. If the ride is departing from a location that is not covered by the existing start location maps on our website, then please make sure that full details are provided in your post.
- At the start of the ride, check that all participants are members of either the BCC or another OCA affiliated club.
- Ensure that all riders are wearing crash helmets as these are mandatory on all BCC rides.
- If an ineligible rider insists on participating even after being asked not to, then the ride must be cancelled.
- Identify all participants, especially new members, and ensure that everyone knows who is leading the ride.
- Check that all participants have adequate food and drinks for the ride. This particularly applies to new riders who may not realize the importance of nutrition and hydration. Leaders may also wish to cast a discreet eye over new member’s bikes to make sure they look in good shape for the ride.
- Let all participants know how you want to prevent dropped riders (e.g., having rear sweep position responsible for calling out if someone is dropping back).
- Conduct a headcount just prior to departure, and periodically during the ride.
- If the group size is too large for safety on the intended route, split the group into packs of 6-12 riders, and designate an experienced rider to be pack leader for the separate group. Provide a copy of the route map or cue sheet to the pack leaders. The packs should ride at least 100m apart on the road to allow other vehicles to pass safely in two manoeuvres.
- Tour leader and pack leaders must ensure that Risk Management Policies, such as rotation, etc., are followed to promote the safety of the ride.
- If you feel it necessary to call off a ride because of unsuitable weather, please update the events calendar in good time to let everyone know. As safety is a priority, you can make this call at any time and your decision is final.
Group riding is, by definition, a group activity and requires the active input and cooperation of all participants. It is not possible for the tour leader to see and hear everything that is going on at all times and so you can help out in many ways;
- By calling out if you are towards the back of the group and see somebody falling behind. Some leaders designate sweepers to rider at the back and look after slower riders but it is still necessary to communicate any such occurrences.
- By repeating any calls up or down the group so that everyone, especially the leader, hears what’s happening.
- By properly following the leaders instructions, for instance, if asked to wait at a designated place for everyone to re-group you physically stop and wait and not just ride on a reduced pace.
- By making sure that you tell someone before you leave a group ride and ensuring that your message was heard and understood.
- By taking your turn at the front of the group and not leaving it to others to do all the work. The stronger riders will naturally take longer turns but everyone should do their bit within their ability. Follow the standard rotation manoeuvres outlined in BCC Group Riding Techniques.
- By selecting a group appropriate to your abilities based on the 4 levels of rides that the BCC offer. Stronger riders who choose to ride with a slower group must ride at the speed appropriate to that group. It is not acceptable to force up the speed for whatever reason and you should understand that other riders may already be working hard just to maintain the designated pace. If you wish to ride with a faster group than you are used to and are unsure about your ability to keep up, inform the leader before the ride starts, so that the leader can keep an eye out for you and perhaps advise you to draft at the back of the group until you adapt to the new pace. Riders are encouraged to try a faster group but you should understand that it will involve working harder than normal.
- If you plan to turn back early as you are unable to devote sufficient time to complete the entire ride, please understand that the leader or other participants have no obligation to escort you back.
At the Brampton Cycling Club, safety is a number one concern. The club offers a number of skills clinics on safe riding techniques and everyone has a role to play to ensure that groups rides are safe for all the participants.
Official, insured rides are listed in our events calendar as club rides and club tours. Rides listed on the forum unofficial and not covered by insurance.
Due to insurance requirements, only riders insured with Ontario Cycling are allowed on group rides.