Posted at: 04/20/2013 9:38 PM
Updated at: 04/20/2013 10:45 PM
By: Steph Crock

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Safety Training for Motorcycle Riders

(ABC 6 News) -- Saturday was the annual "Spring Flood Run” in Minnesota. Where up to 30,000 motorcycle riders hit the roadways along the Mississippi, but this kick off to the riding season, is a reminder to be careful out there.


Last year 53 bikers were killed on Minnesota roads. We stopped by a training class where the number one concern was rider safety.


The first time revving up the engine, can be a little unfamiliar when you live in a state where there's only a few months to ride out of the year. "During the winter months when we're unable to ride, and during that time, you may lose those skills," said Bert Otto with the Minnesota Motorcycle Safety Center.


A reason why some were attending the class Saturday. "I’m trying to get it done early and hopefully we have some weather to ride in soon," said rider Greg Vanscoyk. He took the class Saturday alongside beginners, and he's been riding for decades. "Over 30 years," he said.


However, he's seen firsthand what can happen in you're not extra careful. "Witnessed a pretty bad accident on the interstate involving other motorcycles last summer and the girlfriend and I thought it might be a good things to get a new course taken," said Vanscoyk.


Just this past week, a man from Austin died after crashing his bike on Interstate 35 near Albert Lea. He lost control and was not wearing a helmet.


"After seeing what I saw last summer, definitely something to keep in mind and I would highly recommend it," said Vanscoyk. However, helmets can only do so much, which is why this course is a long one. "Nine exercises in our first day of training and then this afternoon’s class will be back tomorrow for their second day of 5 hours of training," said Otto.


They are preparing riders so they'll know how to ride the correct way. "Basic skills that you need for cornering, breaking, doing quick stops," said Otto, and also how to react if they get caught in a dangerous situation, "because when you’re out and riding, and you need those skills to stop quickly, you need them now," he said.


If you'd like to know where there's a riding course near you. You'll find that at;