Biker Down!

We’re absolutely delighted to be supporting award-winning Road Safety Organisation, “Biker Down Staffordshire”, this month with a gift of £500 from our Helping Hands funds, and we wanted to tell you all about them and the amazing work they do.


Biker Down was established by the friends and colleagues of PC Luke Van De Sande who died in August 2019 while motorbiking with friends. Rob Gilligan, a recently retired Motorway Patrol Sergeant, established the organisation and now runs it alongside a team of volunteers, many of whom are serving Police Officers, in Luke’s memory, saying “Biker Down is such a fantastic initiative that we immediately knew it was the best way for us to do something tangible for bikers in memory of Luke.”


Working without a budget, Biker Down devised a training package aimed at bikers which would educate them in accident prevention and first aid in the event of an accident. Since 2021, there have been 36 deaths or serious injuries in motorbike accidents on Staffordshire roads. Biker Downs’ hope is to reduce fatal and serious injury collisions by educating vulnerable road users and in turn reduce the exposure of emergency service staff to these highly traumatic incidents.


To date, they have delivered training to over 300 motorcyclists and recently gave a bespoke package to the British Army at MOD Stafford. They currently have a waiting list for their seminars, details of which you can find here.

As part of the training, which is given for free, each motorcyclist receives a first aid kit including a tourniquet which can be carried on the bike. In the event of an accident, this could be used to stem the flow of blood through trauma induced haemorrhage – this being the number one risk to life. Unitas’ donation will purchase 100 of these tourniquets.


Biker Down have received a number of accolades for their work, including a Superintendents Award from The Central Motorway Police Group, a Chief Superintendents Award from Staffordshire Police and the honour of appearing on the cover of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents’ “Care on the Road” magazine.


Our CSR Co-ordinator Rachel Forster said, “Unitas is delighted to award the Helping Hands funding to such a worthy cause, their volunteers tirelessly dedicate their time freely to educate and help to save lives of those involved in a bike traffic collision.”


“Unitas are delighted to be supporting Biker Down,” Mark McGill, Head of Planned, Mechanical and Electrical services who is a keen motorcyclist added, “At this time of year many motorcyclists, including myself, are starting to venture back out on to the roads as the weather improves and daylight hours extend in to the evenings. To assist Biker Down in the provision of 100 tourniquets and join them in raising awareness of the vital training that they provide to motorcyclists is terrific! We all want to see our friends and loved ones return home safely after a ride out and Biker Down have the knowledge and experience to share with us to make this a happen.”


Rob Gilligan from Biker Down added, “We are incredibly grateful for the support shown to BikerDown Staffordshire by Unitas. The purchase of 100 tourniquets is phenomenal and we will be giving these items away, along with the knowledge of how to use them, to everyone who attends one of our free workshops. If we can save just one life, then the partnership of BikerDown Staffordshire and Unitas will have been a massive success!”


If you wish to donate or support Biker Down Staffordshire please email them,

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