After a nearly nine-month hiatus, the U.S. Navy resumed motorcycle training for military and Department of Defense identification cardholders on Dec. 16 at several locations in Hampton Roads.
The classes, which were paused in March due to COVID-19, are now offered at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story, Norfolk Naval Station and Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia.
“Installations are happy that they’re now able to provide training to the Sailors,” said Charisse Averett, regional safety and occupational health specialist for the mid-Atlantic region. “We want to protect our Sailors and get them the appropriate training, skills and knowledge that they need so when they’re out on the road, they’re safe.”
Averett added that this has been a challenging time for riders to stay current on training, and resuming these courses will alleviate the added stress and help the Navy to continue protecting its most valuable resource: its people.
Fred “Mac” McMullen, a senior instructor with American Motorsports Training, said he and other instructors have anxiously awaited the opportunity to get back to teaching the courses.
“I get calls constantly about people asking, ‘When are you teaching again?’ It’s been a long wait, but we’re excited to get back into it and start making a difference again,” he said.
The classes range from beginner level, also known as the Basic Rider Course (BRC) to the advanced level for more experienced riders. All military riders must take a refresher course every five years. This training requirement can be met by taking either the Experienced Rider Course (ERC/BRC-2) or the Advanced Rider Course (ARC).
Previously, classes were limited to 12 students and two instructors; however, due to current COVID-19 restrictions, there is now a maximum of eight students and two instructors per course. For those interested in attending BRC, McMullen said loaner motorcycles are still provided for the riding portion of the course; however, students are now required to bring their personal protective equipment to include helmets and gloves.
The motorcycle course schedule and availability is located online in the Enterprise Safety Applications Management System (ESAMS) and can be accessed with a common access card at https://esams.cnic.navy.mil/. All prospective students must have an ESAMS account to view the schedule or enroll in any of the motorcycle training courses.
Riders who aren’t current on training requirements due to the lapse in course availability during COVID-19 restrictions will have priority; however, McMullen encourages all who are interested to either enroll if space is available or request to be added to the waitlist in case of cancellations.
For more information or additional questions, McMullen said military members should contact their unit or installation traffic safety coordinator or motorcycle safety representative.