With the prediction of an early spring and warmer weather ahead, PennDOT recommends free motorcycle training through the Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program (PAMSP) as part of a rider’s preparation for the 2016 riding season.
Free courses for novice through seasoned riders are offered at 76 statewide locations to Pennsylvania residents who have a motorcycle learner’s permit or motorcycle license. All training courses are conducted on a riding range, under the supervision of certified instructors.
“As with any skill, it is important to practice and refine riding techniques from time to time. Riders of all skill levels can benefit from the valuable skills and safety lessons learned through Pennsylvania’s free motorcycle safety classes,” said PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards. “The short amount of time spent in training translates into many safe miles of riding by helping riders sharpen reflexes and hone the split-second decision making required to safely operate a motorcycle.”
The 15-hour Basic Rider Course (BRC), consisting of five hours of in-class instruction and 10 hours of practical riding, provides valuable training for new riders and gives experienced riders the opportunity to polish their skills and correct any unsafe riding habits they may have developed. Students taking the BRC are provided with a motorcycle and helmet; however, students are responsible for providing all other protective gear. Act 84 of 2012 put into place the requirement that all permit holders under the age of 18 successfully complete the BRC in order to receive their motorcycle license.
The six-hour Basic Rider Course 2 (BRC2) allows skilled riders to refresh their safety knowledge and hone their on-road skills. Licensed riders taking the BRC2 are permitted to carry a passenger while practicing balance and steering techniques in a controlled environment. Students taking the BRC2 must provide their own motorcycle and protective gear.
The Advanced Rider Course (ARC), a one-day training session modeled after a military training course, offers licensed motorcyclists a chance to enhance their safety skills through a minimum of 3.5 hours of classroom instruction and 4.5 hours of practical riding experience designed to enhance riding attitude and awareness. Participants in the advanced course are required to use their own motorcycle.
Rounding out the PAMSP training courses is the 3-Wheeled Motorcycle Basic Rider Course (3WBRC), a 12-hour course comprised of four hours of classroom instruction and eight hours of practical riding. Students must provide their own three-wheeled motorcycle and protective gear.
Motorcycle learner’s permit holders who successfully complete the BRC, BRC2 or the 3WBRC will be issued a motorcycle license. Those who successfully pass their skills test on a three-wheeled motorcycle will be issued a motorcycle license with a “9” restriction, meaning they are prohibited from operating a two-wheeled motorcycle.
For more information or to enroll in a course, visit www.pamsp.com or call 1-800-845-9533. Potential riders who want a convenient way to study for their knowledge test can download the PA Motorcycle Practice Test app by visiting www.pa.gov and searching the mobile apps for the Pennsylvania Motorcycle License Practice Test.
Riders are also encouraged to visit www.LiveFreeRideAlive.com, an interactive website designed specifically for motorcyclists. The website challenges riders to take personal responsibility for their own safety and offers an open forum for riders to share experiences. They can also promise to be safe riders by taking the Be One Less pledge. You can also follow Live Free Ride Alive on Facebook.