The Route Marking Team is vital to the riders to ensure their safe travel and encouragement from Miami to Key West. This team is marking the route with signage, arrows and chalk in advance of the riders. Long days are involved in this crew. Must have vehicles that can carry signage, stakes, spray chalk and materials needed. This team begins their work on the Thursday before the event to ensure all marking for day one is completed by the end of Orientation Day. The team then goes out on day one to mark the route for day two.
Crew Description: The Job of the Route Marking Crew is to place (and take down) signage along the route to A) Show Riders where to go and B) Alert traffic to the increased presence of bikes on the route. There are multiple types of signs.
Spray Chalk – to mark endless miles of road with no turns, to mark road hazards, to mark turns and put inspirational messages to riders on the road.
Directional Arrows – to supplement spray chalk and to insure Riders do not miss turns!
Warning Bikes on Road Signs – Warning signs must be set up on both sides of the road to alert oncoming traffic of cyclists’ presence.
Motivational Signs – to encourage Riders and keep Riders moving.
- The Route Marking CREW is actually made up of 3 teams that work in conjunction with each other. The Duties of the the teams include:
- Team A is responsible for marking the next days route with arrows and caution signs
- Team B is responsible for all chalk markings along the route
- Team C is responsible to follow behind the Caboose and removes all the signage from the road.
- Team A and B will leave around 9am on Orientation day to begin marking the first days route. They will meet with the Logistic Manager and/or Producer to go over the route and discuss any areas requiring special attention. After meeting, Team A & B proceed to mark the next day’s route. You must notify dispatch when departing the hotel. Make sure you notify them by saying, “Route Marking Team A or Team B are leaving Hotel”.
- Any and all route changes must be made by the Logistics Manager – please do not make any changes, regardless of how insignificant you may feel they are unless you have been given approval by the Producer!
- Safety vests MUST be worn at all times when placing signs and/or marking roads. In addition, use vehicle emergency flashers to help alert other drivers, both behind you and oncoming as to your intentions. Remember, it will be very dark on country roads that do not have street lights. YOUR SAFETY IS PARAMOUNT!
- Placement of signage is critical. Riders must be able to see the information and be able to respond in a reasonable time. This is also true for vehicles being warned of cyclists. Make sure that the signs keep the Riders safe and on the correct route!
- Refer to the route cue sheets and specific instructions from the Logistic Manager as to when and where to place the signs. Be aware that vehicle odometers may vary and that there may be minor variations in the marking noted on the spreadsheet. Please remain flexible and do your best to place signs as suggested on this document. Follow the directions closely, some areas DO NOT ALLOW SPRAY CHALK OR OTHER SIGNS! Again, any and all route changes must be made by the Producer – please do not make any changes, regardless of how insignificant you may feel they are unless you have been given approval by the Producer.
- If you encounter problems such as detours, new road closures, floods, road construction, you must notify dispatch immediately. In these events, the next days’ route may need to be changed. We will require as much time as possible to create new maps/directions, re-route catering and support vehicles, arrange for alternate pit stop sites, etc., etc. It is crucial that we have updates of any road and/or weather condition changes right away! Even if it is 3 or 4 am. You must communicate these changes to Ride officials. You will have a list of emergency and contact numbers for this purpose.
- When Teams A and B has finished marking the route, they will be at the evening hotel. This CREW should carry all their personal gear with them at all times! The Route Marking CREW Manager will be given the hotel location.
- This is an incredibly important job. It is really noticed when the signs are wrong. Many thanks to this CREW for the hours and the special attention it requires to do this job right! The Riders REALLY DO APPRECIATE YOU!!
- Team C will also be issued a copy of the route marking spreadsheet. They are responsible for the maintenance and clean up of all route marking signs. They will then follow behind the Caboose who follows the last Riders and collect all the signage. NEVER GET AHEAD OF THE CABOOSE. If you do, you will end up taking signs down before the last Rider has gone through. Take an inventory of all signs after all are picked up.
- Make notes where signs are broken and/or damaged (especially if it’s been raining). These signs will need to be replaced before they are handed back over to the advance team. Start-up time for cleaning the route will vary. Keep in touch with the pit closure CREW through dispatch so that this process may be accomplished in a timely manner. Much of the route can be cleaned of signage as the Riders progress past. You will probably be the last CREW into the hotel and the day 2 holding area.
- Notify dispatch of your arrival into the hotel at night by saying, “This is Route Marking CREW C returning to Ride hotel.”
- If any problems arise with route signage, such as damaged or incorrect directions, this team must proceed immediately to that location and correct the problem. Riders depend on the information conveyed by these signs, it is extremely important that it be correct!! If you are called by dispatch, drop whatever you are doing and GO! Your quick response to a situation may save a life or avoid an injury. Riders put their trust in us….make sure we deserve it. Once the problem has been fixed, return to the end of the Ride and begin removing route signage from the route as you have been doing. Team B is responsible for getting their bag lunches from Ride Services before leaving Ride Out or the Hotel.
- There will be a hand-off of all signage back to Team A each night at the nightly meeting with the Producer. This is the best opportunity to meet each other and to get all questions and concerns addressed.
- F.Y.I . – at major intersections, the road perpendicular to the route needs “CAUTION –BICYCLE CROSSINGS” on all sides.
- These signs will be used next year. Be sure to note any damage.
- Remember as you clean the route of signage you are NOT providing a sweep service! There will not be any space to shuttle riders and their bicycles legally in your vehicle. However, please lend a hand with communications support, bike tech support or first-aid help. Do not abandon lone Riders or CREW. Call Dispatch with their position and wait with them until assistance arrives.