Well it's the turn of a new year now & time to come up with new ideas as the RIDE RIGHT Coordinator. For those that don't know yet RIDE RIGHT is the safety program that RAGBRAI came up with about 12 years ago, at the behest of the Iowa State Patrol. It was either do that or the popular annual ride would be scratched for good. From that point on RIDE RIGHT has become a model used by several bike clubs & teams nation wide for their own safety programs. For more info. on it visit ragbrai.org.

This past year I have done my best to distribute all of the RIDE RIGHT safety materials RAGBRAI has to offer. There are bike shops, state welcome center's, rest stops, chamber's of commerce & city halls where the materials are available. I have also helped out at kids bike rodeo's & safety fairs through out the past spring & summer. I have been in contact with the Iowa State Patrol education officers to ask that they speak to the new driver's ed. students about how to properly behave when encountering a cyclist on Iowa's roadways. And of course I'll continue to encourage & kindly educate members of my own bike club on proper bicycle safety.

But I want to & am going to do more in 2005.

I have started a friendly letter writting campaign. I am writting to all of the companies in my community that have professional drivers. This ranges from trucking companies, to city employees all the way down to pizza delivery people. And there are several. There are 2 brochures available for motorists: Share The Road, this is for passenger cars & trucks & Wheel Issues Bikes & Big Trucks, this one is for the larger commercial vehicles. The letters will be very friendly & courteous & in no way judge how the drivers operate their vehicles & state that the brochures are for an educational & informational purpose.

I am also going to provide the RIDE RIGHT materials for any & all organized bike rides that I become aware of within 50 miles of my home. Of course for this I'll have to contact the ride organizers. This should not be a problem as I have done several of the rides myself.

If anyone else has any other ideas on how I can expand work as the RIDE RIGHT Coordinator in my community please let me know.

Questions & comments are also welcome.

Thank you.

John