Date: 20th July, 2021
The Biker Down scheme in Wiltshire has been assured for the coming year, after sponsor AJN Steelstock renewed – and increased – its support.
Biker Down is a national road safety initiative targeted at motorcyclists, which was originally conceived and started by Kent Fire & Rescue Service, and started in Wiltshire two years ago. It has now expanded to be under the umbrella of the National Fire Chiefs Council, with fire bike teams promoting safer riding and encouraging further/advanced rider training.
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service runs the scheme, which incorporates a three-part programme that can be delivered in multiple locations, free of charge to those taking part.
The Service also supports Biker Down in Dorset, where it is run by the charity Doc Bike.
Road safety manager Christine Sharma said: “Since it started in 2019, Biker Down has been very well received by the biking community in Wiltshire and Swindon. The pandemic has impacted on what we have been able to deliver in recent months, but we are now busy planning future courses, especially trying to target the many people who have bought new machines in the last year.”
Statistics from the Motorcycle Industry Association show an increase of 148% in the number of powered two wheelers bought between May 2020 and May 2021. Electric two wheelers saw an increase in sales of 340% in the same period.
Watch Manager Dean Hoskins, from Swindon fire station, who leads on Biker Down Wiltshire, said: “Thanks to the incredible support from AJN Steelstock, we can fund more courses and reach many more bikers. Our fire bikes are also great to take along to meets and other events, as we can then chat with fellow bikers in a relaxed and informal setting. The feedback we get from people who do Biker Down is nothing but positive, so we really do want to reach as wide an audience as possible.”
Alan Boyden, joint managing director at AJN Steelstock, added: “As an experienced biker, I’m well aware that the actions taken in the first few moments after an accident can be crucial in minimising injuries and can make a real difference to everyone involved.
“There’s no doubt that the knowledge, understanding and experience gained from the Biker Down courses will help to save lives, and we’re only too pleased to continue to support the programme.”
For further information about Biker Down Wiltshire, visit www.facebook.com/bikerdownwiltshire
Watch Manager Dean Hoskins and Alan Boyden of AJN Steelstock are pictured with the fire bike funded by the company’s sponsorship.