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RUSA Permanents / Insurance issues

Old 12-23-19, 11:46 AM
  #26  
unterhausen
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There are some organizations that have insurance to pay the rider's expenses after a crash, but RUSA only carries liability insurance for the eventuality that someone decides that they really didn't mean it when they signed that waiver. So they really aren't trying to protect you, just the volunteers that run the rides. It's not like racing, where there are people that derive significant income from putting on events. This may be an unfortunate change due to the insurance problems. I'm sure there are RUSA volunteers that are reassessing their willingness to risk their financial health in order to spend a lot of uncompensated time putting on rides. I have had a fleeting thought that I should require people to show that they have good health and life insurance policies in place, as well as reasonable limits on their uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance
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Old 12-23-19, 04:23 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Fullcount View Post
Most of us ride on our own insurance policies anyway.
This is a common misunderstanding.

This isn't insurance for you.

It's liability insurance for RUSA for when you injure yourself and you decide** to sue RUSA and everybody else even remotely associated with the ride.

** "Everybody" says they won't sue before the fact.
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Old 12-23-19, 04:45 PM
  #28  
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I'm really surprised by the low incidence of lawsuits RUSA has had. The problem is that if you have a big loss for one insurance company, they are going to want you to sue everyone you can. RUSA is an obvious target
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Old 12-28-19, 02:38 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
I did see a 4-day brevet series in Nebraska that sounds interesting, not sure if I'll do it or not.
I wouldn't mind working into more touring and less randonneuring, but that runs into some different issues.
I live in SC Nebraska and love to ride in the Sandhills, in which the 4-day brevet is being held. Hope to see you there! If work allows, I'm hoping to ride the first few days of the BRAN ride, which starts the weekend before and is routed through the Sandhills. Then take a few days off and ride the 4-day brevet. I'll get a big dose of Sandhills riding.

I second the notion of more touring. It's my first love, although I do like (mostly) the challenge of randonneuring.
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Old 01-13-20, 09:30 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
Can an RBA put a brevet on the calendar with a week's notice? I mean, let's say I got three or four riders to agree to do a 200k ride next weekend, we could ask the RBA to put something on the calendar and he could accommodate us? I assume it has to come from a list of approved routes, but I also assume there plenty to choose from, at least in this area. Then, once it's in the calendar, anyone can ride it.

(The NJ RBA has already done something like this, a 200k next Saturday and a populaire (130?) on Sunday; with no support; so that's good. And I think I can do one or both, so that's good too. But he didn't do that's as a request from me.)
The RBA Resources page on the RUSA Web site covers the rules regarding how much notice is required for an RBA to put a brevet or populaire on the RUSA Calendar. See https://rusa.org/pages/rba-resources. The notice requirement depends on whether the route is 1200k or longer or not, and if it has been approved by the RUSA route committee or not. Grand Brevets can only go on the RUSA Calendar if approval is sought prior to July 31 for a calendar that goes llive on September 30 of that year. Routes shorter than 1200k that have been previously approved by the RUSA Route Committee can be thrown on the RUSA Calendar with only 6 days notice. These events do not qualify for ACP credit. And routes shorter than 1200k that have not been previously approved by the RUSA Route Committee can be thrown on the RUSA Calendar with 5 weeks notice. Again, these events do not qualify for ACP credit.

There are far more perm routes approved through the Permanents Program than there are routes approved by the RUSA Route Committee that qualify to be posted to the RUSA Calendar. The assumption that there are plenty of pre-approved routes to choose from when asking an RBA to post an event on the RUSA Calendar on 6-days notice is misplaced. Eastern Pennsylvania has 25 200k routes from which to pull. New Jersey only has 8 or 9. And whether or not the routes are "current" is a matter of dispute. Routes that go unused for a while go stale. Convenience stores close and information controle questions become outdated. Furthermore, not all RBA's are created equal. Most volunteer to do their job with a certain time commitment planned. And that time commitment does not include putting on several extra events that local RUSA members want to ride. It's not only the RBA's you have to worry about when it comes to putting extra events on the RUSA Calendar. You also have to worry about the RUSA Route Committee which is slow to approve routes - at least that is my experience.

As someone says above in this string of posts, many of the perm routes are lame. So it's not so simple to take a perm route and get it approved as a brevet or populaire. And there is a serious shortage of RUSA members who are talented in designing interesting routes that members would want to pay to enter. So I think as you read my comments you will realize that RUSA is in big trouble now that the Permanents Program is defunct. From my perspective the only thing of value RUSA offers is the opportunity to ride 1000k and longer group rides. And it doesn't offer very many of those. All the other rides, whether on the RUSA Calendar or as a perm, are really just training rides for those 1000k+ rides. And nobody should need credit for training rides (or commutes to work).

I think I'm correct in saying this: Eastern PA is the only RUSA Region EAST OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER that offers events 12 months during the year so an R12 can be earned without the need for the Permanents Program. With the Permanents Program gone, most of the RUSA awards that have been dreamed up are going to become obsolete for most RUSA members. I'm not sure that is a bad thing for the members. But it is definitely a bad thing for RUSA.

The interesting thing about RUSA is its Board promised to get back to membership by January about how it was going to deal with the defunct perm program situation. As I write this post half of January is about gone and there is still no word from the Board. Not a good sign.

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Old 01-13-20, 11:25 PM
  #31  
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I disagree about the 1000k+ plus rides being the only thing of value, as that is not too much of interest to me.
Yes, it would help to have some more news of what was going on. More particularly, if nothing is going to happen, permanents-wise, it would be helpful to know that ASAP. With no news, I assume some sort of progress is still being made.
The perm rules have changed before, so not surprising they change again. But some of the awards like K-hound are a whole lot easier with the perm program.
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Old 01-14-20, 09:44 AM
  #32  
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There was some talk on the randon newsgroup about an update coming, there's still half of January left so I wouldn't start worrying yet.

I'm not into awards at all and if I ever qualify for a rusa award I don't think I'd buy the medals for it. It seems to me perms are mostly a solo endeavour so I could see why that would be something insurance companies wouldn't really want to get into, especially if anyone can make anything a route. It does seem like there is a demand for something so eventually someone will fill the void. There's a Canadian Kilometer Achiever Program that is an honour program that people can do. I don't know what would be stopping someone from setting up an American version for permanents... doesn't really have to be a rusa thing. But I guess anyone doing that in the states is exposing themselves to lawsuits that are keeping insurance companies away from the perm program in the first place... tough nut to crack I guess.
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Old 01-14-20, 12:38 PM
  #33  
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since the vast majority of perms are ridden by the owners, and the owners did all the administration, it seems like it was an honor system anyway

It's probably going to have to be electronic, which is going to make some people unhappy.
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Old 01-14-20, 09:45 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Fullcount View Post
Seems every time I get a post from RUSA it is about an insurance issue. Today I opened one up and it is about insurance again. Potential solution - having permanents classified as a "group" ride with a leader to eliminate the solo rider from heading out on a ride while under an insurance policy.

I get it. Insurance costs money.

My question is this? Why do we have to have permanents tracked by route owners and paperwork filled out and all that comes about under the window of RUSA in this age of technology. With SPOT personal locators, Gamin and Wahoo devices lasting longer on a battery charge, why can't we do a solo ride and submit a STRAVA trip report to prove that the ride was performed within the time frame? Shucks, you can add photos to your Strava ride with receipts and time stamps. Sounds like it is time that brevet & permanent rides take advantage of modern technology and relieve some of this burden from the route owners and RBA's. Leave the ride list online of the different routes, ride the routes when you can, submit the results electronically to a central email address and let's see if we can streamline this process.

Most of us ride on our own insurance policies anyway. Why burden RUSA with covering these permanents under an umbrella policy, when technology can track these rides automatically. It would make riding a series of populaires and permanents easier as you can do a pop up ride whenever precious time permits. I think an automated reporting mechanism will go a long way in attracting more riders for both sanctioned brevets and that allusive 200K that you need to finish the series.
So is RUSA's problem with getting insurance for the Permanent Program mainly about solo rides vs group rides? I've been a member of RUSA since January of 2017. I rode no perms in 2017 and I did not volunteer to do any pre-rides for brevets in that year either. In 2018 I rode several perms and I volunteered to do pre-rides and help out on event day for several brevets. And in 2019 I rode several perms, enough to earn the K-Hound award before the end of August. Most of the perms I have ridden over the past two years I did solo. Only two of which I did not own. And one of those two was one I designed, but let a friend submit for ownership. About half of the brevets I pre-rode I rode the pre-ride solo. I suspect I was not unique riding the pre-rides solo.

So what is the difference between riding a perm solo and riding a brevet solo? I don't really see a difference. And if they are the same, then does the RUSA insurance for brevets cover the pre-rider? Should it cover the pre-rider riding solo? What about an event with only one entrant? Is that event covered by RUSA's insurance? Must all pre-rides be done in group now?

An interesting development in the NJ RUSA Region is taking shape. In December (last month) the RBA threw a 200k event on the RUSA Calendar for December 21. Riders were expected to sign up for the event online. However, there were two options for signup. One option was to register for the ride to be held December 21. The second option was to register for a "pre-ride" with no expectation that the pre-ride would involve scouting and no expectation that the rider would be volunteering to help run things at The Event on December 21. About half of the entrants did the event, and the other half of the entrants did some sort of pre-ride. None of the pre-riders showed up on December 21 to help run the event. All entrants got RUSA credit for their ride as if they had done it on December 21. It felt to me as though something was wrong with this setup since I have been involved with volunteering and pre-riding in the past. Take a look at RUSA's RBA Procedures page on its Web site. See https://rusa.org/Download/RBAProcedures.htm. Scroll down to the heading entitled: Pre-riding Events for Credit. There it says: "A volunteers’ pre-ride is ... not supposed to be a scheduling alternative." It seems to me that the NJ Region setup for the December 21 event allowing "pre-rides" does in fact provide a scheduling alternative. And if you ask me, those pre-rides smell much like a glorified perm, especially if they were ridden solo. I know for a fact that at least some of them were ridden as a group ride. Interestingly, that same event offered and held on December 21 is being offered the same way this month on January 20. The real kicker is that the event in December was held on a Saturday. The event this month (January) is to be held on a Monday. Now how likely is it that RUSA members will actually sign up for a 200k brevet to be held on Monday? And how likely is it that those pre-riders will actually show up on a Monday to help run the event?

I'm not trying to single out the NJ RUSA Region as doing something wrong. It just so happens that it is doing what it is doing and to me it seems to be wrong. In substance what it is doing is creating a new kind of RUSA Calendar event. One that can be ridden any day of the month before the scheduled event date. Let's take this to an extreme. Why bother to choose December 21 or January 20? Why not make it the last day of the months: 12/31 and 1/31. That way the registrant can do his or her ride any day of the month he or she so chooses. And solo at that! What's the difference between this kind of ride and a perm ride? Clearly not much. So is the current RUSA insurance policy covering this kind of setup? If it is, then why is the Permanent Program not still in existence?

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Old 01-15-20, 07:56 AM
  #35  
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they said that the problem wasn't stated and that there is nothing requiring the insurance companies to state the problem. I think they just didn't understand the perm program and are very conservative nowadays.
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Old 01-15-20, 12:30 PM
  #36  
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I think they anticipate a "normal" bike club routine, where everyone shows up at one time and rides a designated route.
They may or may not be aware that when that happens, you still have people riding solo at 3:00 AM and stuff like that.
I think perhaps the perm program came across as everyone riding any time any place and RUSA is responsible.
jlippin- same thing is being done here on the pre-rides. I will say in the past, the emphasis from our RBA has flip-flopped from "pre-ride anything at your convenience" to "must be working the ride" and back again, depending on feedback from RUSA. So I don't think the NJ club is doing anything wrong, they're just interpreting the rules in a looser fashion, and I assume this is being allowed or encouraged by RUSA due to the perm situation.
One advantages of pre-riding a brevet is that you can pick your weather. One advantage is you can schedule a time of day to your liking, helpful for 100ks. One of our k-hound riders did largely weekday rides last year, which doesn't fit the normal brevet program.
Brevets count towards UltraRandonneur awards while perms don't, so in the past, that motivated some people to do brevet pre-rides when they might have done a perm otherwise.
Pre-rides should be covered under same insurance as brevets.
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Old 01-15-20, 01:42 PM
  #37  
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I like the clear and defined BC Randonneurs policy on pre-rides. I like that they disqualify people if they don't show up to volunteer. I get that people have busy lives but part of a brevet is that it's a specific route ridden on a specific date and all the riders get to share in the same conditions. Picking a pre-ride for credit to be on a nice day while rain is forecast for the actual brevet seems like a cop-out.

In my experience doing my own, uninsured pre-ride during the week for a weekend ride, I missed a big change in traffic patterns that happens on the weekends... wasn't a major issue and the route change was either wait to cross, or 5km of loose gravel, but there's a lot of places traffic patterns are very different on the weekends. Next time I do a pre-ride I am going to schedule it as an official perm on a saturday a week or two beforehand, just to get insurance. We're lucky in Ontario to still have insurance for our perms, but the program isn't as popular as the RUSA version and it only allows current brevets to be ridden, no one has ever done a perm-pop AFAIK.

We generally don't have volunteers for brevets in Ontario so there's not really any pre-rides done here. I think y'all are lucky to have volunteers on your rides so I understand the need to keep them happy.
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Old 01-15-20, 03:00 PM
  #38  
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I think anyone dong a pre-ride is doing a service. I did a pre-ride once and discovered that the route wasn't passable at one point because some ******* took a big truck across a covered bridge. They _really_ didn't want any pedestrians on that bridge, but I did it anyway. I was pretty close to the end and didn't know a detour. As far as when someone does a pre-ride, it is nice if they do it at the time and day of week as the ride will be held. There was one route that really needed a change due to traffic and road conditions. The RBA had someone check out an alternate route, they did it on a weekday. It turned out that the traffic on Saturday was much worse, so that was a failed experiment.

Apparently RUSA is again looking for insurance.
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Old 01-17-20, 12:50 PM
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A lot of our brevet routes are also perms, and in the case of the 1200 and 1000k brevets, I had them broken into multiple perms, so you could go ride the route at your convenience, and get credit for both the pre-ride as a perm and the normal ride as a brevet.
I'm not too worried about the series myself, so was always fine just riding the perm if one was available.
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Old 01-17-20, 04:04 PM
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they announced they put in an insurance application to cover perms and that they will announce december/january makeup rules for R12/P12 soon. So hopefully this is all going to be moot.
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