2020 sees a new branch of the Dorset based DocBike charity operating in the Staffordshire area. DocBike aims to Eradicate all motorcycle deaths in the UK’ and provide motorcycle injury prevention and critical roadside care.
The collective effort between Luke’s Legacy and the DocBike charity collects donations to fund a critical care paramedic or trauma doctor complete with the fully equipped motorcycle for the Staffordshire area. The bike allows lifesaving skills and equipment to get to the scene of an emergency quickly at the roadside.
Luke’s Legacy was started by the family of a police officer killed in a motorcycle accident on the 27th August 2019. 28-year-old Luke Van De Sande was a keen motorcyclist in his free time, awaiting training as a firearms police officer. Since Luke’s funeral, Luke’s Legacy is collecting donations intending to raise £40,000; the cost needed to buy and convert a motorcycle to a fully equipped DocBike. This conversion is complete with essential items like a critical care monitor and defibrillator.
The concept of the DocBike goes back to 2015 when the Dorset based, two-man team of PC Chris Smith and Dr Ian Mew met together. PC Smith of Dorset police and Dr Ian Mew, an intensive care and Air ambulance doctor started the project delivering modules on the local BikeSafe course in the Dorset area. The Biker down course provides essential skills to bikers through interactive sessions based around First aid, police response and the science of being seen. Not content with just teaching the skills required in an emergency to bikers, the pair wanted to take the skills to the road. A rebadged police specification R1200 became the first DocBike kitted out and displayed at events up and down the country.
Both charities receive no government funding and rely solely on funds raised through public donation, private businesses and philanthropic organisations. DocBike has plans to expand the project nationally with every county having at least one bike available.
Motorcyclists are one of the highest risk categories of road users, accounting for only 1% of annual mileage, but 25% of critical injuries and 25% of the deaths on UK roads. Motorcyclists are also 25 times more likely to be hurt compared to a car driver. The first hour after an incident is often described as the ‘Golden hour’ for the patient.
When specialised trauma doctors can deliver their skills within this golden hour at the scene of the accident, the outlook increases for the survival of sustained injuries, but also the reduction of recovery time. Whether using an Air Ambulance, or a DocBike, the speed and equipment on board saves lives.