On the record ... with Scott Haas
DeKALB – Free motorcycle rider training classes are offered throughout the state. The Northern Illinois University Motorcycle Safety Project is one of four state headquarters, and oversees 12 training locations in northern Illinois.
Scott Haas assumed his duties as the coordinator of the project earlier this month. Haas was a motorcycle safety instructor at Southern Illinois University from 1992 to 2004, when he came to NIU as a mechanic. Two years ago, he became assistant coordinator.
He spent some time last week discussing motorcycle safety with MidWeek reporter Doug Oleson.
MidWeek: What exactly does this program do?
Steve Haas: Basically, we teach people how to ride a motorcycle. We offer four different courses. There's an entry-level course, which we call the Basic Rider Course. It's a 20-hour course which takes a student who basically has no knowledge of motorcycles and teaches them the basic physical skills and mental aspects of operating a motorcycle.
There's also an intermediate rider course, kind of an abbreviated basic rider course, for people who do have some motorcycle knowledge; perhaps they rode when they were younger and then started a family and gave up the motorcycle, which is a very common scenario. They now have an empty nest and some income and they want to get back into motorcycles, or their friends are. They don't have to take the full course; it's just sort of getting out the cobwebs. It's also good for people who have been riding without a license for a number of years.
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