One of the aftershocks of the Boston Marathon bombings this week is that racing is going to drastically change. Competitor.com, the organizers of the wildly popular (and often sold-out) “Rock n Roll” marathons has already said they’re working on updated security procedures, and runners at New York Road Runners are being told they can only bag check items in official clear plastic bags, with absolutely no backpacks or other bags placed inside the clear ones for security reasons. Organizing yourself for a race is going to become more than just training and showing up, but there is one item every runner and spectator should have: a RoadID.
RoadID is the best $20 you will ever spend. A RoadID is a rubber or fabric bracelet with a metal information plate engraved with your name, age, town, emergency contacts, and any medical history that needs to be known to a first responder. So, for example, mine indicates that I am allergic to penicillin, and lists Sarah and my father (and their cell numbers) as emergency contacts. Sarah and I each have one, and after reading RoadID’s post on Facebook I am going to make sure we both wear them even if only one of us is participating in a race. Apparently a RoadID customer was running Boston, and her husband was waiting at the finish. He was near the second blast, and the RoadID helped them reunite at the hospital.
For $20, first responders can know any immediate medical issues, and even if you aren’t aware, someone can contact your loved ones. Even if you aren’t participating in an athletic event, this is a cheap and very easy way to make sure important information can be conveyed in an emergency. One note: RoadID sells a Shoe Tag version, but I’ve heard from EMTs that they prefer and recommend wrist or dog tag style RoadID instead, because shoes can be separated from you more easily, defeating the purpose of the ID.
It’s a sad reality that we have to think about things like RoadID, but it’s a small price to pay for some peace of mind. And RoadID’s story on Facebook proves how a small, simple item can bring an incredible amount of safety and peace of mind. Check them out here, and stay safe out there!