March 2020 Top Talk -Portland Bicycling Club

March 2020 Top Talk

As president I am happy to make some important announcements this month:

Firstly, we have selected a new club jersey, which will make its appearance this spring. More details regarding the jersey can be found in this issue of the QR, plus stay tuned for your chance to order one later in March!

Secondly, the board has approved resurrection of the club position of community liaison. In the past this person reported on a variety of around-the-town news, but internet news and bicycle blogging offered similar news and more, so the position was dropped. The revised role of the position will be:

If interested, please email me at with your vision as to how you would like to do this. It could be an interesting position and comes with a small perk – free club dues for the years you volunteer.

I also want to share with you some news about the American Lung Association’s Reach the Beach ride. Not only are we represented by club members, but thanks to the organizational skills and enthusiasm of Lynn Blanchard, the club is represented by a team! I encourage all of you to support our team by visiting the team website at PBC Reach the Beach Team and donating to individual riders. With as little as $5 from many people, small donations can add up to make a big difference! The RTB training series has begun!

Insurance update: One of the lesser known benefits of being a club member is coverage via our club’s medical reimbursement and liability insurance, which can significantly defray out-of-pocket costs of medical bills (up to $10,000 less a $500 deductible) should you have the misfortune of being injured on a club ride. The benefit is particularly helpful for those with out-of-network bills or health insurance with a high deductible.

  • If you are in an accident on a club ride, be sure to fill in or have someone fill in the online accident report, accessible from our bike safety page, so that our safety committee (executive board and members at large) can expedite filing the claim with the insurance company.
  • Also, at the start of every ride, note the contact information of your ride leader. If not written on the paper copy of the map, write it down during your sign-in. If you fall behind the leader in a non-group ride and you encounter difficulties, your ride leaders want to know. Really, they do! Send a text, email, or call to let them know. Once on a group ride, I hit a post on Marine Drive (foolishly looking at an eagle) and was knocked off my bike. I couldn’t walk for a bit, and to this day pain related to that injury persists during riding. It never occurred to me to let the ride leader know or that they would want to know! A couple riders stayed with me until I could get a ride, but I’m not sure the ride leader was ever informed. Our ride leaders ARE caring individuals who want to make sure everyone is safe on their rides, and they really do want to know of incidents at the rear. What can you do? Write down on the map or keep the ride calendar on your phone handy to be certain their contact information is readily viewable.
  • Keep your own identification and emergency contact information easy to find on your person (best) or on your bike. Consider carrying your downloadable membership card (after logging in) or writing down the info. Another recommendation is to purchase a road identification wrist band or bracelet that includes your name, emergency contacts, blood type, and allergies: the rugged Road iD band or Medical ID bracelet.

I hope none of this is ever needed, but life on a bike is unpredictable. Let’s be careful out there! How do we do that? For advice, check out some of our past safety articles on our website at Bicycle Safety (found on the pulldown menu under the “Rides” tab).