Life At Samsara

Ride with Pride: Samsara Partners with AIDS/LifeCycle for a Safer, Smarter Ride

June 26, 2024


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This Pride Month, Samsara is proud to partner with AIDS/LifeCycle (ALC) for their annual fundraising event: a weeklong bike ride spanning 545 miles along the California coast from San Francisco to Los Angeles. Samsara for Good, the corporate giving arm of Samsara, and members of our Pride Employee Resource Group collaborated to bring this partnership to life. The organizers of the ride will be utilizing Samsara Vehicle Gateways and Dash Cams on 35 critical trucks carrying gear to track their progress along the coastline, have a better understanding of where all their resources are throughout the week, increase the safety of the drive, and better serve the cyclists as they make their way to Los Angeles for a good cause.

Each year, AIDS/LifeCycle benefits San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the Los Angeles LGBT Center. Since 1994, they have been raising funds for life-affirming HIV and AIDS-related services such as sexual health screenings, affordable housing for at-risk youth, trans support services, and community outreach.

Chris Weachock, a member of Samsara’s Web Development team and Pride Employee Resource Group, participated in the ALC ride last year, raising $3,500+ for the organizations and creating the opportunity for Samsara to become an official partner for ALC 2024.

Why did you decide to participate in the AIDS/LifeCycle ride last year?

Chris: Last year, I participated in ALC for the first time. I was inspired by friends who were riding and by my own love for biking. When I first moved to San Francisco, I participated in an event called “Light in the Grove,” which was held on the eve of World AIDS Day. People from all over gathered in Golden Gate Park at the National Aids Memorial to remember those who lost their lives to HIV/AIDS. Those events in San Francisco deeply impacted me, reinforcing my commitment to the cause. The ride itself was such a profound experience, from the camaraderie of Red Dress Day, where all the riders don a red dress and visually recreate the AIDS ribbon winding through the hills of California, to the solemnity of the candlelight vigil on the beach, commemorating those lost to the virus. I have friends who are HIV positive, and the event served as a way to honor them.

Bike surrounded by candlelit vigil

When you participated in ALC last year, you had the idea of using Samsara hardware on your bikes. Why did you do this, and what data did you collect? 

Chris: So here comes the nerdy part, haha. During the ride, I had the idea to use Samsara Asset Gateways to track my progress. I rigged up three to use throughout the week (and gave them names: Sprout, Acorn, and Basil). I was able to collect interesting data, including the entire distance I biked, my speed, GPS location data, and more. It was a fun way to apply our products in real time and provided me with a unique opportunity to test the customer experience in a small way. 

Additionally, this gave me the idea to connect the AIDS/LifeCycle organizers with my colleagues at Samsara. I noticed the organizers used walkie-talkies and other manual methods to track their vehicles and operations. I knew that Samsara’s products could aid their work, help them streamline their operations, and create a safer experience for such an impactful event.

Samsara Asset Gateways and employee Chris Weachock at the AIDS/LifeCycle rideAsset Gateway map AIDS/Lifecycle ride

What a great opportunity to connect to a great cause like ALC. How did Samsara help with the operations of their ride this year? 

Chris: This year, along with five other Samsarians, I volunteered on the sidelines, helping to set up the day before the ride started, and saw the cyclists ride off from the San Francisco starting point the next day. The scale of their operations is vast—with numerous trucks, cyclists, roadies, and pieces of equipment. Last year, they worked with walkie-talkies and other manual methods to coordinate the ride and vehicle tracking. With the Samsara partnership this year, the organizers are using Samsara Vehicle Gateways and Dash Cams to get much more visibility and peace of mind—helping them monitor all their assets, keeping their drivers safe, and tracking their vehicles over the week-long ride.

The organizers at AIDS/LifeCycle shared their thoughts after using Samsara for this year’s ride:

"We have vehicles that move ahead of our cyclists to scope out the route and any safety hazards. As things arose throughout the ride, our Command Center was able to see where our advanced teams are, where potential hazards could be, and could make better-informed decisions on how to route or hold cyclists to keep everyone safe.

Our experience with Samsara was smooth from end to end—from setting the devices up in our fleet of vehicles to getting folks onboarded with the dashboard to tracking vehicle movements in real-time. Both our tech-savvy and our not-so-tech-savvy folks raved about their experience and desire for this partnership to continue because it just worked."

What are you looking forward to as we partner with ALC next year?

Chris: Supporting events like AIDS/LifeCycle is crucial for raising awareness and funds for vital LGBTQ+ services and contributing to an organization that fosters community and solidarity. Looking ahead to next year’s ride, I am excited about the continued partnership between Samsara and AIDS/LifeCycle. By providing advanced tracking and logistical solutions, we aim to make the ride safer and more efficient for everyone involved. Personally, I aim to ride again next year, supporting this cause close to my heart and leveraging our technology to make a positive impact. 

Learn more about how Samsara’s technology is connecting the world of physical operations and how you can join us in making the world more efficient, safe, and sustainable.


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