Hot Springs HOG Chapter
Hot Springs, Arkansas
Membership
Guide




Welcome to our Chapter. We hope that this is the start of many fun-filled times for you with your fellow Harley riders. The main slogan of the Harley Owners Group is “Ride and Have Fun!” and this is the focus of the Hot Springs Chapter - Arkansas. Each year our Chapter Members participate in a wide variety of rides and activities that are planned by the Chapter Officers to enhance the enjoyment of riding our Harley Davidson motorcycles. Below is some information to help new members and existing members become involved in our local Chapter.
The Hot Springs Chapter - Arkansas of the Harley Owners Group looks forward to your participation as we “Ride and Have Fun!” together.
Introduction
The primary purpose of the Hot Springs Chapter is to promote responsible motorcycling activities for National HOG members by organizing events, encouraging the participation in those events, and to increase the level of enthusiasm for riding Harley Davidson motorcycles.
Contact Information
The local Chapter website is www.hotspringshog.com. Information concerning the Chapter, including the list of current officers and their individual contact information, is included on the website.
Membership
Membership in the Hot Springs Chapter shall be available to all National HOG members in good standing. The Chapter membership runs from January through December and the current membership renewal rate is twenty dollars ($20), payable by the first of January of each calendar year. Members will be removed from the membership rolls, for non-payment of dues after the last day of January of the New Year. All members will be full members - not associate members - and all will receive the same benefits.
New membership dues will also be twenty dollars per year and will not be prorated during the year. Any National HOG member purchasing a Harley Davidson motorcycle from Rock City Harley Davidson will receive a free one-year Chapter membership.
Your Chapter membership terminates if and when your National HOG membership terminates. The National dues are not renewable at the same time as the local dues unless you joined the National HOG in the month of January. Your National dues come due in the month you joined National HOG. You can join or renew your National membership by phone at 1-800-CLUB-HOG or on-line at www.hog.com. Please report your National HOG renewal to the Membership Officer.
Your local Chapter membership card will have your local membership number on it. All the numbers start with 4097-01, which is our Chapter number; the following 4 digit number is your individual local membership number. You will need to keep your card handy because you may be required to present it when signing in for rides, meetings, etc.
The membership of any person who violates the letter and/or spirit of the HOG Charter for the local chapter (hereinafter referred to as the “Chapter”), as published and periodically updated by HOG in the chapter handbook, may be suspended or revoked by a majority vote of the Executive Board of the Chapter. Members may appeal such a decision to a grievance committee composed of a Chapter Officer, a representative of the sponsoring dealer (Rock City Harley- Davidson) and a representative from the general membership of the Hot Springs Chapter.
The sponsoring dealer (Rock City Harley Davidson) may suspend or revoke a person’s membership in the Hot Springs Chapter if they deem his/her conduct to be undesirable.
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Chapter Meetings
Local Chapter meetings are a great place to meet other riders in the area and get involved in Chapter activities.
As a general rule the meetings are held on the 4
th Saturday of the month at 10:00. Currently, we meet at the VFW, 2231 E. Grand Ave., Hot Springs. The meetings dates and times may be adjusted from time to time in order to avoid conflicts with holidays or for our members to take advantage of rides or events. Changes or adjustments are posted on the website and email notices are sent with as much advance notice as possible.
Each month we have a sign-in sheet for members and a separate sheet for guests. Make sure that you sign in (legibly) on the correct sheet. We distribute door prizes by drawing the numbers next to the member’s name on the sign-in sheet.
Our sponsoring dealership is Rock City Harley Davidson. They are currently offering a discount promotion system where active Chapter members may receive a 10% discount on certain purchases. Members receive a card to have initialed by a Chapter officer at each Chapter activity, meeting or ride. Active members are those who participate in at least two events per month. Check at the Rock City dealership in Little Rock or with a Chapter officer for details.
Chapter merchandise (patches etc.) is available for purchase by members at the Chapter meetings.
Communications
The majority of our information and updates is communicated via e-mail. It is important that you provide a current e-mail address in order for us to keep you up to date. If you do not have an e - mail address, it would be beneficial to partner up with another Chapter member who could share the information with you.
We also have a Facebook page www.facebook.com/pages/Hot-Springs-Arkansas-HOG.
Information on the rides and other events is frequently posted on Facebook to keep members informed.
Chapter Officers
Hot Springs HOG Chapter Officers serve each year from January through December. Nominations for Chapter Officers are held at the October meeting for the upcoming year with elections held in November. Members must be present at the Chapter meetings to nominate someone for office and to vote. Proxies are not accepted. Any member in good standing is eligible to be nominated but must accept the nomination. Office positions are listed below with primary officer positions indicated with an asterisk (*). Primary Officers comprise the Executive Board of Directors.
Director*
Assistant Director*
Secretary*
Treasurer*
Head Road Captain
Membership
Activities
Ladies of Harley
Merchandise
Safety
Historian
Webmaster
Photographer
Editor
Chapter Rides
The Chapter rides are selected and scheduled by the Road Captains and/or Chapter Officers. In order to be a sanctioned Chapter ride it must be open to all members. An email notification should be sent out by the Chapter secretary in advance of the ride. The rides are typically scheduled months/weeks in advance and posted on the Chapter website. Members are encouraged to make ride suggestions to any Officer or Road Captain.
The ride schedule is subject to change due to adverse weather conditions or for other reasons. Rides may be changed to a new time or a new starting point or both. Check the website and your email for any changes prior to the ride.
All riders are to ride safely and ride within their experience and comfort level at all times.
Road Captains
The Road Captains are responsible for conducting the Chapter Rides. Prior to a ride, they select the route, pre-ride it for unsafe conditions, insure the destination is suitable and make any arrangements necessary for the group. They also prepare each group by conducting a pre-ride briefing during which time they explain the planned route and provide any
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other information pertinent to the ride. Each ride should have at least two Road Captains when possible, a Lead Road Captain and a Sweep. If additional Road Captains are present, they will be mixed in the lineup. Larger groups may be divided into smaller groups; each group will have a Lead Road Captain and a Sweep.
All ride participants are expected to follow the directions and instructions of the Road Captains. All participants should be familiar with Staggered Riding procedure and Hand Signals used by the Chapter.
If you have an idea for a ride, please talk to one of the road captains or officers. A list of current Road Captains may be obtained from the Head Road Captain or from the website.
HOG Ride Categories
Chapter rides are conducted primarily for the benefit of Harley Owners Group Chapter members. There are three categories of events defined by National HOG.
CLOSED Rides are chapter rides that are open to Chapter members with current memberships and guests. There must be at least one Chapter member for every guest on the ride.
MEMBER Rides are Chapter rides that are only open to HOG members.
OPEN Rides are Chapter rides that are open to Chapter members, National HOG members and other guests as desired.
NOTE: All Chapter rides are “Closed” rides unless otherwise specifically stated by the Chapter
Board of Directors.
Group Riding
Personal Preparation
You are responsible for making sure you and your bike are ready for the ride. Make sure you are rested, alert, feeling well and dressed in appropriate riding gear. You should be physically and mentally prepared to make the ride. If you are tired, not feeling well, or just "not up to par," it may be wise to stay home and ride another day.
Review the T-CLOCK safety check. T -- Tires and wheels C -- Controls
L -- Lights
O -- Oil
C -- Chassis
K -- Kickstand
All riders should begin the ride with a full gas tank. All rides are planned with ample gas stops, considering the smallest tank in the group and that everyone starts with a full tank.
Be on time. All riders should meet at the scheduled meeting time. All rides leave promptly at the scheduled departure time in order to arrive at the destination on time.
Group Preparation
Rides are scheduled to meet at a certain time and generally depart 30 minutes later. During this time you are encouraged to socialize with your fellow Chapter Members, sign-up for the ride, fill out any necessary release forms and listen to the pre-ride briefing.
Chapter member numbers are required on the sign-up sheet so be prepared to show your membership card to the Road Captain. If you do not have your membership card, you will be required to complete an Adult Release form. If your spouse/passenger is not a Chapter member, s/he must complete an Adult Release form. All adult guests must
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complete an Adult Release form. There must be one Chapter member for every guest on the ride. If a child (under age 18) is participating on the ride, the child and his/her parent/guardian must complete two forms: Chapter Event Release form for Minors and the Minor’s Assumption of Risk Acknowledgement form.
The Road Captain will give a pre-ride briefing covering the route, the Chapter riding rules and any other information concerning the ride. Listen closely and feel free to ask questions.
The Ride
Riding with a group can be fun and exciting, but only when everyone in the group observes the same rules. When riding with the Chapter, everyone is expected to observe the following rules so that the rides will be safe, fun and enjoyable. The Road Captain will leave first from the starting point and will be followed by all other bikes, which will fall into the staggered formation as soon as possible. The Sweep will follow the group.
Ride within your ability and comfort level. If at any time you feel that the ride has exceeded your riding ability or comfort level, or you have safety concerns, you should consider pulling off to the side at a safe place. The Sweep will stop with you. You can then decide whether to continue the ride or not.

Obey all laws (speed limits, stop signs, stop lights, etc.). Expect the rider ahead of you to make a FULL stop.

Ride in staggered formation with approximately 2-second spacing. The bikes form two columns, with the leader at the head of the left column. The second bike will head up the right column and ride approximately one second behind the leader. The other riders follow the bike directly in front of them by two seconds, which puts those one second behind the diagonal bike in front of them. Use the 2-second spacing regardless of your speed. As your speed increases, the distance of the gap will increase. When riding in adverse or limited visibility conditions (such as night, rain, fog, etc.), reduce speed and increase the spacing to 3 or 4 seconds.

Fill gaps by changing column. When a bike drops out of the ride and creates a gap, the bikes following fill the gap by changing columns and moving up into the gap.

Use hand signals. The Road Captain will use hand signals to indicate a change of course, hazards or other information to the group. Each rider uses the same signal to pass the information back through the group (Form the signal so that it is clearly visible to the riders behind you). The common hand signals used by the Chapter are:

Left Turn Staggered Formation
Right Turn Slow Down
Left Hazard Stop
Right Hazard Pull Off
Single File
See last section of this guide for hand signal illustrations.
Keep the group together without heroics. Often the group will get separated by a stop light, traffic congestion, etc. It is not necessary or advisable to take heroic or exceptional steps to regroup. In the event the group is separated, the Lead Road Captain will adjust the ride (either by slowing down or stopping at a safe location) until the ride is regrouped. In some circumstances, this may take several miles...BE PATIENT. Do not ride beyond your limits or break any laws when trying to regroup. If you find yourself LEADING a separated part of the group and you are not sure of the route, PULL OVER IN A SAFE PLACE. Everyone behind you will pull over and the Sweep will choose someone or will lead the group until it catches up with the group ahead.

Pull side-by-side at stops, start together with the left bike accelerating faster. This helps move the group through stops quickly and get as many bikes through a stop light as possible. As the two columns come to a stop, the right column will move up even with the left column. On the start, the two bikes leave together

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with the left bike accelerating faster to reestablish the staggered formation.

Negotiate intersections as an individual. Act as an individual when proceeding through an intersection. It is your responsibility to insure that you safely have the right-of-way. If it is not safe for you to proceed, then wait until it is...no exceptions. Never blindly follow the bike in front of you through an intersection, especially when making a left turn. The group will reform after the intersection. When turning in an intersection, use a single file or tight stagger formation, never turn side by side.

Yield to cars (especially at entrance ramps and lane changes). This is very important. When a car needs to enter from an entrance ramp or is signaling to break into the group, yield and give them plenty of room. Most drivers (and even bikers when in cars) proceed down entrance ramps assuming that they will be able merge in between two cars. When confronted with a line of motorcycles and no clear space in which to merge, some drivers may become unsure, confused and even intimidated by the situation. You can lessen the possibility of an unsafe situation. “Manage the Situation” by hand signal (waiving them into the lane in front of you or simply giving them plenty of room. Once a car merges into a line of motorcycles, it will generally get out as soon as possible. In almost all cases, you will not need to pass the car to regroup, it will move out of the way. Once the car is gone, close the gap while maintaining a safe speed. Another case of needing to yield happens when an inattentive driver pulls alongside the group and then realizes that they have to take an upcoming exit. Again, “Manage the Situation,” using hand signals to waive them over in front of you. If a driver signals to break in, LET THEM IN. In a lot of ways, this is an even more dangerous situation than the entrance ramp. People will go completely crazy when they think they may miss their exit. Think about it... it's much easier to just back off and let them in. They will be out of the way shortly and you can close the gap.

Signal all turns and lane changes with signal lights and hand signals; Make visual checks before you move. The Road Captain will signal for turns and lane changes. You, in turn, make the same signal and pass it back through the group and to signal any other vehicles near you. Before making a turn or changing lanes and after you have signaled for an appropriate amount of time, look with your head (not in your mirror) to see if you have clear space. If so, then make the turn or lane change. NEVER MOVE WITHOUT LOOKING! It is not always possible for the Road Captain to make lane changes when the entire group has a clear lane. If there is a car in the way, simply break the group around the car. If you are near the car, do not try to "get ahead" if it will crowd the car. Simply slow down and change lanes in back of the car. The car will soon be out of the way and you can close the gap.

Park as a group whenever possible. When the group stops for a break, park as a group whenever possible so that the ride can be smoothly resumed. Don't park with the front of your bike facing downhill. Don't park where you will have to back up over slippery gravel. When turning off a roadway onto a parking/gas area, pull to the BACK of the lot FIRST, to let other riders get off the street faster. Then find a place to park/gas. Wherever possible, pull in and turn facing the outside at a diagonal in the spaces, pulling side by side, NOT stopping to back in. DON'T back up while your bike is running. If you slip and accidentally pull the throttle, you can injure yourself, your bike, other people, and bikes near you.

The rides officially END at the destination. Riders may choose to ride together on their own after reaching the initial destination, especially during overnight rides, but these are not considered Chapter rides, unless designated by the Road Captain. You may return home at any time and by any route you choose. If you are not sure of a route to get home, ask a Road Captain for directions. Occasionally a separate group ride may be planned by the Road Captain for the return trip for those who wish to participate.

Multi-lane Roadways. When the group encounters a multi-lane highway or "two-lane passing zone," stay in a staggered formation in a single lane behind the Road Captain. DO NOT spread-out in two lanes that prohibit other traffic from passing the group. The Road Captain will signal and change lanes into the appropriate lane when the group nears the end of the "two-lane passing zone."

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Emergencies
In the event of an emergency requiring a stop, observe the following procedures so that the emergency may be resolved in the safest manner possible. Remember, we do not want a group of motorcycles on the side of the road in an unsafe manner under any circumstances. There are 2 types of Emergency stops: Mechanical / Personal (non-life threatening) and Accidents.
Mechanical/Personal
Sweep stops - All others continue. If a bike encounters a mechanical or rider problem that requires a stop, the rider should signal and stop in as safe a place as possible, preferably well off of the road. All other bikes are to continue with the Lead Road Captain to avoid having a group of motorcycles on the side of the road. To insure that the Lead Road Captain is aware of the problem, pass a signal to the front of the group by flashing your high beam and sounding the horn or message by radio/phone.
Only the Sweep stops to help. It is the Sweep's responsibility to stop and assist the rider with the problem bike.
Lead Road Captain leads the group to a safe location. If the Road Captain deems it necessary to check on the problem, he will stop the group at a safe place and call the Sweep to determine what action to take.
Road Captains should carry cell phones and first aid kits. The Road Captains should use their cell phones to communicate with each other when necessary. They should also carry small first aid kits.
Accidents
All Road Captains following the accident and the Sweep are to stop. All others continue. The Sweep is in charge and will determine who needs to stay to accomplish the following:
1. Insure everyone stops in a safe location.
2. Notify the authorities by calling 911.
3. Render aid to injured persons, remember, DO NOT move an injured person, except if they are in a hazardous location that will lead to further injury, and DO NOT remove their helmet. If the helmet is removed by trained emergency response personnel, send the helmet with the injured person to the hospital - medical personnel may need it for damage points and injury assessment.
4. Maintain and protect the accident scene and provide traffic control.
5. Get the names and addresses of witnesses whenever possible. Take photographs of the scene using cell phones or cameras.

The Road Captains are responsible for completing and submitting an Injury Report to the Chapter Secretary. The injury reports are filed in accordance with the Harley Owners Group requirements.
Towing
As an active full or life National HOG member, you are covered by the HOG Roadside Assistance Program. See your National HOG membership manual for details. When you need a tow, call the Roadside Assistance number (toll-free 1-888-443-5896) on the back of your National HOG membership card to arrange a tow.

Hand Signals


Left Turn Left arm and hand straight out. Back of hand to rear.  Fingers together and straight out. Right Turn Left arm straight out with forearm and hand pointing up.  Back of hand to rear.  Fingers together and straight up.
Left Hazard Left arm angled down. Index finger pointing at hazard. Back of hand to rear. Arm remains still. Right Hazard Right leg extended out at an angle pointing at hazard. Both hands remain on handlebars.
Single File Left arm straight up,  Index finger pointing up, Back of hand to rear. Staggered Formation Left arm straight up,  Index and little fingers pointing up,  Twist wrist back and forth.
Slow Down Left arm angled down with up and down motion.  Back of hand angled slightly to the rear. Stop Left arm out with forearm and hand pointing down.  Palm of hand to the rear.
Pull Off Start by pointing with left arm straight out and move arm to point forward, then return to starting position. Repeat.  Point with index finger.