Inclement Weather Plan & Cancellation Policy

Inclement Weather Plan

The Canadian Mental Health Association Peel Dufferin Branch strives to produce a full and safe Ride Don’t Hide event, but sometimes the weather conditions can impact those plans.

Ride Don’t Hide will go ahead rain or shine! All participants should arrive as scheduled on the morning of the Ride and should be prepared to ride in the rain, this means bringing along rain gear (including a bright colored jacket, vest or shirt).

The event will only be cancelled or postponed in the event of thunder and lighting or other extreme weather conditions. Any decisions related to the postponement or cancellation of the event due to weather will be made prior to the start time of each ride.

The Ride Don’t Hide team will attempt to keep all riders up to date on the plans for the day, according to the weather forecast. The schedule may be altered, due to inclement weather.

If there is lightning in the area, the event will be placed in a weather hold and start times can be delayed for up to two hours. If the lightning has departed the area before or after two hours, the ride will proceed as planned with an adjusted schedule. If there is still evidence of, or the potential for lightning in the area, the ride may be further delayed, shortened or cancelled.

What to do if you encounter inclement weather on route

In the event of inclement weather while you are riding or if you feel unsafe, you should take independent steps to stay safe. If Ride Don’t Hide crew members (route marshals, follow vehicles, etc.) instruct you to dismount or find shelter, please do so for both your safety and for those on the road with you.

Lightning is perhaps the most common, and potentially dangerous, inclement weather condition faced by individuals and cyclists.

Take appropriate shelter when you can count 30 seconds or less between lightning and thunder, and remain sheltered for 30 minutes after the last thunder-clap. Participants can continue on the Ride after 30 minutes only if it safe to do so, or return to the celebration/marshaling site. The Ride Don’t Hide crew will monitor all routes and provide regular updates. Participants should be on the lookout for Ride Crew members and follow any instructions given.

 Some Information About Lightning

 When the skies darken, look AND listen for increased wind, flashes of lighting or thunder. If you hear thunder, you are close enough to be at risk of being struck by lightning. Take safe shelter immediately!

  • Lighting can happen in or during heavy rain but also remains a danger when storms are dissipating or have passed by. Lightning can also occur as far away as 15km or more from any rainfall.
  • As cyclists, you are at most risk when under or near tall trees, on or near hilltops, or at the highest point on flat land, such as when riding through areas of fields and farmland.
  • Contrary to popular belief, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires DO NOT protect you from lighting.

If you are caught outdoors with no obvious shelter close-by:

  • find a low spot away from trees, fences and poles;
  • make sure that the place you pick is not subject to flash flooding; or,
  • if you are in a wooded area, take shelter under shorter trees as lightning is more likely to strike the tallest trees.

If you feel your skin tingle or your hair stand on end:

  • dismount IMMEDIATELY and get away from your bike;
  • squat low to the ground on the balls of your feet to minimize your contact with the ground; and,
  • place your hands on your knees, and your head between your knees and make yourself as small as possible.

What Kind of Shelter is Safe?

  • A sturdy building, an underpass, large barn, store or porches are all good places to seek shelter.
  • If you are on a hill with exposure to the sky, try to head downhill. Seek out an overhanging bluff, valley or ravine where you can lower your exposure.
  • Avoid creek-beds as they can be at risk of flash flooding during heavy rainfall.

DO NOT take shelter in small sheds or under tall or isolated trees.

Ride Don’t Hide Cancellation Policy

Due to the nature of bike rides, generally taking place in the outdoors, weather conditions can play a large role in the production of the event. The safety of our participants is always our first priority and the cancellation of the Ride will be at the discretion of CMHA Peel Dufferin’s CEO, in consultation with the Ride Don’t Hide Team and/or local law enforcement officials.

Because a significant amount of the funds collected during registration have already been expended by the day of the event for the production of the event, and because the event is uniquely scheduled for its date and location, registration refunds are not possible and rescheduling the event is not possible, and thus Ride Don’t Hide has a no refund policy.

Thank you for your understanding. We appreciate your participation.

CMHA Peel Dufferin Ride Don’t Hide Team

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