When Ship Happens- who you gonna call?

4 replies [Last post]
Andyman's picture
Joined: 2007/06/22

Points: 3

How to summon help effectively

A useful tip from my FPOS course:

When you are in the shit- who you going to call?

Why your neighbourhood MacGyver of course?


We all know of such a famously resourceful person who can make things happen.

Being able to make, adopt, adapt contingency plans on-the-hoof is something you develop through experience and through role play.

Sometimes, you just need to hand that over to your MacGyver and let them sweat it for you. - because often out there, you are limited in choices and resources and battery life.


Go through your mind for those resourceful, fast thinking friends in your network.

Someone who knows and understands ‘your world’ of riding out in less travelled areas and terrains.

When the proverbial SH#t hits the fan, whether it is mechanical or medical recovery, that’s the person you will call.

NOT necessarily the Emergency response services.

The person you call must stay on mission until the crisis is well and truly wrapped up.

Feed them your GPS location, state your emergency and then let them roll with it.

If you are on a sat phone leave it to them to come up with a buddy with international roaming so they can get back to you with text message updates or requests for updates, further intelligence.


Your resourceful buddy will activate the right emergency response and look up your location on online maps.

They can talk the responding vehicle through the route plan to you and help them make sure they take the right roads.

Form where they are, they can coordinate the response in a way that you get the best service for the nature of your emergency

Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

Andyman's picture
Joined: 2007/06/22

Case in point:  On 29 July 2013, at around 09H30, I was doing some retail therapy at Builders Warehouse when Tony Schlee called me to report Tinka down badly on the R354.

He gave me details, I told him what he should do and that he sends someone back to where there was phone signal to relay my response.

I went in to in-shop coffee bar, commandeered a table and their computer and from there directed the emergency response.

In the comfort of this shop, I soon had the ambulances re-routed, the SAPS on the way and ZA RKK- the AMS AG 109 rescue helicopter routing out of Oudtshoon to her recovery.

The coffee shop kept me online, fed with coffee and scones and I stood down once Tony told me the scene was closed down and everyone on their way home again.


When Justin had his terrible mountain bike fall out in the wilds of Contermanskloof hills, Trevor gave me a call.

I dropped what I was doing, pulled the Metro Rescue service in to the call, got transferred in conference with Trevor to the responding Paramedic and let him interrogate Trevor.

From there we activated a Wilderness Search And Rescue (WSAR) carry team with 4x4’s and used WhatsApp to feed updates and photos to the respondents and this allowed Trevor to look after his patient not have to sweat the technical stuff.


There are many many other such war stories.

I have also had to call my friendly MacGyver for mishaps on my rides and then just leave them to run it from the comfort and safety of a controlled environment with far better resources at their disposal than I had out in the cuds.

Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

Andyman's picture
Joined: 2007/06/22

The same has applied for bike recoveries,

Many's the time in the last ten years where a bike recovery team contracted by the rider's family or insurance has called for help in getting a person-on-the other-side-of-the-phone for when/if they get lost.



Just having someone the responding services can get reliably on the phone again, takes 80% of the frustration and angts away from the situation.

I remember talking the helo that went to collect Chris D in to the scene.

I do not think I did much, but the crew felt comfort in having someone they could phone via their control room if they got lost. 

Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

Geoff Russell's picture
Joined: 2007/09/25

You ARE the MAN Andy Connell.

Committee: Ride Captain

Andyman's picture
Joined: 2007/06/22

Im sure there are many amongst our friends who would dorp what thee were doing and coordinate a recovery plan.

Peter O'Hanlon is my GoTo as well as few guys from the Moth Motorcycle Club who are also in my tribe.
But there are many others vested with common sense and good will.

Pete has been co-opted  to step in and find us accommodation out in the Free State, he googled, called around and came back with options, then made the booking.

Some have been claled to find us tyres, or spares.

I think more than a few times.

I've certainly found assurance, peace of mind and great comfort in calling a good buddy from out in the cuds, explaining the dilemma and then leaving them to work a plan.

I'm always available to help and if not, can hand over to someone.




Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

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« May 2019 »


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