Cycle Response Training–Part 2

The first day of training was to prove that we could control the bikes, and that we were safe enough to be let loose on the roads.  The second day was for demonstrating that would could cycle safely in real traffic, and the fitness tests.

First up was the cycle in traffic.  As campus is on the top of a hill, this first involved a cycle down the hill.  Oh, and the glorious weather yesterday had turned in to pouring rain.

I was riding one of the response bikes.  Complete with an almost full load-out of equipment (including a full O2 cylinder).  Down a steep hill.  A wet, steep hill.  That was an interesting experience.

To save time, our instructor combined the endurance test with the proficiency assessment.  The requirements changed depending on age and gender, but we were all aiming for 10km in 40 minutes, the young male target.  This is a fairly comfortable patrol speed, and even before allowing for the traffic and the rain, we did fine.

We had a lunch-break in town, just about hiding from the rain while keeping a close eye on the response bikes.

The next assessment was a 1km sprint, followed by a six-minute scenario including CPR.  Except, this had to take place on campus, where we wouldn’t have as much traffic to deal with.

Remember that hill.  We were now headed the other way.  With our bikes, so no cheating by taking the bus.

Four of us tried to ride our bikes up the hill, two on response bikes (me and one other) and two on their own bikes.  Everyone else decided not to even try to cycle, walking up instead.

It was a slog, more so considering the fact that I was already soaked through, and was lugging a gas cylinder.  And I made it.  Once I’d got my breath back, and decided I wasn’t about to have a heart attack, I was very pleased with myself.  I’ve never managed that hill before, but this bike had a decent set of gears.

Of cause, I then had to do the sprint.  Along a road on campus, and up and down another one, including two hard turns and an automated barrier to navigate.  I had to aim for 2 minutes 40 seconds, from the end of the radio call.  Oh, and still have enough breath to do CPR for six minutes, and enough sense through the adrenaline to run an AED without ‘killing’ myself.

I made the time, just about.  Felt like I was going to keel over when I skidded to a halt by the ‘patient’, but some how managed to survive.

The scenario wasn’t textbook.  I forgot to check if the patient was breathing, but otherwise did okay.

Only then did we find out that we didn’t need to do the manoeuvres again (a great relief), and we had all passed.  After a small amount of paperwork, a quick round of presentations, and then we headed home. Dripping wet, absolutely knackered, but pleased, and more importantly, now all qualified Cycle Responders.

Oh, and that hill climb…  I felt that one for days.


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About The WalkingPlasterDispenser

So who is the Walking Plaster Dispenser? Well, I'm a volunteer First Aider, working with a well-known First Aid charity to help out random people I've never met before (or, more usually, when) they hurt themselves. This typically involves walking briskly (never run...) around after people who are silly enough to do sports or some other suitably daft activity in their free time. In my spare time, I am a graduate engineer, working my way through a graduate scheme with a big engineering company.

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