Camp Pendleton, Calif. -- --
Camp Pendleton hosted a demonstration of the Commandant of
the Marine Corps Safety Division’s proposed Rider Essential Skills Training
(REST) course here, Feb. 10.
Marine Corps officials are in the process of revamping the course
to further reduce motorcycle accidents in the Marine Corps.
“This course brings some more advanced concepts and it is
tailored to bring in and teach more skills at higher speeds on the road,” said
Robert N. Dobarzynski, the director of safety and standardization for MCI-West
and Camp Pendleton. “It focuses more on the braking requirements, turning and
curving requirements, and braking while turning and curving requirements, because
that is where we need to improve the skill set.”
The course targets intermediate riders and was designed to
mitigate risks involved with riding.
Maj. Don Williams, a safety instructor with REST, added that
this course is unique because it provides riders with essential skills to
safely navigate the two biggest hazards riders face at real-world speeds, which
no other intermediate course does. The two biggest hazards are intersection and
“We want that Marine out on the freeway or highways and
byways to have already practiced higher speed braking and cornering before he
gets put in a situation where there is on-coming traffic or some other hazards
on his roadway,” said Williams.
According to Dobarzynski, motorcycle safety is especially
important to Marines stationed in Southern California due the terrain. The
Marine Corps had 14 motorcycle fatalities last year with nine of them being in
the MCI-West region.
“California is the most dangerous state to operate a
motorcycle in both accidents and fatalities,” he added.
Cpl. Trevor R. Hoyt, a safety instructor for a basic riding
course on base, says that motor cycle safety is important to Marines and all
riders due to the nature of riding.
“The biggest thing that I would ever stress as far as riding
goes is that it doesn’t matter how educated you are, things can always be
thrown at you,” said Hoyt. “Whenever you get on a bike you need to be wearing
the proper gear in the event that something unexpected happens.”
The Marine Corps motorcycle safety experts believe that many
accidents can be prevented with appropriate training, protective gear and safe
This course is not completely finalized and is in phase
three of beta testing.