New Bicycle Response Team Gets to Patients Faster at Crowded Events

New Bicycle Response Team Gets to Patients Faster at Crowded Events

18 September 2015

A NEW breed of helmeted heroes is hitting our streets and will be on hand at this weekend’s Sunday Mail City-Bay fun run.

St John Ambulance volunteers now have shiny new tools in their first aid kits — bicycles.

The organisation has set up its own Bicycle Emergency Response Team (BERT) to get to patients at crowded events quickly. 

Each fluorescent yellow bicycle carries the same amount of first aid equipment as a volunteer on walking patrol.

The first event the team attended was the Royal Adelaide Show earlier this month, where they treated 20 patients.

Team leader Miriam Russell said bike teams could reach patients at the Show within two and a half minutes — down from the normal four minutes on foot.

“It can be the difference between life and death,” Miss Russell said.

“The sooner health-trained members get there, the better the outcome is going to be.”

BERT started with a $41,000 grant from South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Commission and follows on from similar St John bicycle response teams interstate.

“We had great feedback (at the Show) from both St John members, event commanders and the showgrounds as well,” Miss Russell said.

 

Eugene Boisvert, Eastern Courier Messenger, September 18, 2015.