Riding For Life
Freewheelers EVS is a registered charity, which offers an out of hours and free of charge courier service to the NHS. Our slogan "Riding for Life" describes our operation perfectly. We ride to play our part in saving peoples lives and we ride to save the NHS money that would otherwise be wasted on taxis or expensive couriers, but more than anything else we ride because we love it. In 2008, in recognition of the dedicated work of our volunteers, we were given The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service. This is the highest honour that a voluntary group can receive, equivalent in status to an MBE.
Our service is provided by volunteers and we depend entirely on public sponsorship and donations.
Hours of operation
We operate from 19:00 through to 07:00 week days (Monday to Thursday) and 24 hours at weekends (19:00 on Friday to 07:00 Monday) and 24 hours a day on bank holidays.
To use our service call the duty co-ordinator on 0300 800 1907
We choose to use specially adapted motorcycles to give us the maximum flexibility and the best response time, however there are times when it would be unsafe to operate a motorcycle e.g. in thick fog, during snow storms, or other extremes of weather. Our riders are a hardy bunch that operate in all but the very worst weather, so we ask for your understanding if we are unable to operate for rider safety reasons.
We are happy to deliver any of the following items:
- Blood for transfusion, platelets, or other blood products which must be supplied to us in the appropriate insulated packaging. Our bikes are fitted with a rack so that we can take the largest insulated box with ease.
- Blood, urine, or other tissue samples for analysis by pathology and microbiology laboratories, all of which are transported in accordance with regulation UN3373.
- X-Rays, scans and CD-ROMs
- Patient notes
- Frozen breast milk
- Any other medical items or small pieces of medical equipment such as syringes and cannulas
- North Bike: Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire
- East Bike: Bath & North East Somerset, West Wiltshire including Chippenham, Devizes, Trowbridge, Warminster and Westbury.
- West Bike: Covers most of the county of Somerset including Taunton, Bridgwater, Burham-on-Sea, Wells, Glastonbury, Minehead, Shepton Mallet, Wellington and all points in-between.
- Relief Bike: Used to give tired riders a break, complete urgent calls when all the other bikes are busy or complex requests across the Freewheelers area of operation.
- We will not deliver non-medical or non-urgent items e.g. a patient's personal possessions.
- We must be supplied with a telephone number, and a full address with post-code. Please ensure that somebody will be in to receive the package. If you cannot provide a contact number for the delivery address then we will refuse to accept the job.
- On weekday evenings we will only accept jobs that we can deliver before 9pm. This is because we have had several instances where the arrival of a biker late at night has caused significant concern or distress to the recipient. We will also call the patient to ensure there is someone expecting us to make a delivery and that there will be someone to receive (sign for) the delivery.
- We are very happy to make a delivery to a medical professional such as a midwife or community nurse attending a patient's home. However, a telephone number must be given so that we can confirm times and directions.
- Deliveries are undertaken at the rider's discretion. We reserve the right to refuse a delivery if there is any potential or perceived threat to the rider's personal safety.
- Non Urgent: Deliveries that must be made before 7:00am the next morning. These deliveries will be completed but will take a lower priority if an urgent or emergency call is received.
- Urgent: Deliveries that must be made as soon as possible, or within an urgent timescale.
- Emergency: Deliveries that involve a risk to a patient's life. These are the highest priority and are the only ones that justify the use of blue lights and sirens. Please select this category only when justified and appropriate. Please note: A senior medical member of staff will be asked by our coordinator to authorise the call is life threatening and requires the use of blue lights and sirens.
If you have any questions about the service that we offer, please do not hesitate to ask. Use the Contact Form, or contact one of the charity's officers whose details can be found on the Contact Form.
Hospitals and other NHS organisations wishing to use the Freewheelers EVS service should call our duty coordinator on 0300 800 1907.
Monday-Friday - 19:00 to 07:00
Weekends & Bank Holidays - 24 hours