Biker Down reaches over 500 motorcyclists

The Road Safety Team at Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service have been delivering Biker Down workshops across Devon and Somerset since 2015.

During this time 501 Motorcyclists have attended our workshops. These workshops are split into 3 sessions, comprising of road traffic collision scene management, first aid and the science of being seen. The sessions are designed with Bikers in mind and are tailored to deliver vital information and life saving skills in what to do at the scene of any road traffic collision. The last session also helps to explain how motorcyclists can be more visible on the roads and explains that there is a science behind why people may look but don’t always see a motorcyclist. The team provides some insight into simple skills whilst riding to decrease risk and prevent collisions.

The workshops are a national initiative started by Kent Fire and Rescue Service. This scheme has been adopted by many Fire Services across the country including Scotland and Wales.

Biker down-Fire Bike

In 2016 there were 54 fatal road traffic collisions in Devon and Somerset with another 654 casualties sustaining serious injuries. 169 of those killed or sustaining life changing injuries from these collisions were motorcyclists (Motorcyclists only make up about 1% of road users)

Our workshops provide vital information to motorcyclists in how to manage a collision scene along with the vital information the emergency services need to dispatch resources to any incident. It provides first aid skills in catastrophic bleeding, CPR and helmet removal. The workshops last 3 hours and are free to the motorcyclists that attend. They are all held at local Community Fire Stations across our service area and each attendee receives a free first aid kit especially designed for motorcyclists (the workshops are co-funded and delivered in Partnership by our partner agencies from Devon County Council and Somerset County Council road safety teams).

SM Laura Pratt said “these workshops are well attended, and the feedback to date has been really positive. It provides practical skills and knowledge and enables the Fire Service to help reduce collision risk and injury to this high risk group, Whilst enabling them to provide immediate care to anyone in our communities injured through any RTC. The workshop also helps to empower members of the public to intervene and provide life saving skills before the arrival of the emergency services, and gives them key understanding in the information required to keep themselves and others safe at any collision.”

Our workshops are run throughout the year and start again next year in the spring. The dates are advertised on our Biker Down South West Facebook page and motorcyclists can applied for free place via a link on these pages.


Rules for motorcyclists (83 to 88)

Motorcycle licence requirements

2. Motorcycle licence requirements

If you have a provisional motorcycle licence, you MUST satisfactorily complete a Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) course.

You can then ride unaccompanied on the public road a motorcycle up to 125 cc, with a power output not exceeding 11 kW, with L plates (in Wales either D plates or L plates, or both, can be used), for up to two years.

To ride a moped, learners MUST:

  • be 16 or over
  • have a provisional moped licence
  • complete CBT training.

You can then ride unaccompanied on the public road a two-wheeled vehicle with a maximum design speed of 45 km/h (28 mph), with L plates (in Wales either D plates or L plates, or both, can be used), for up to two years.

You MUST first pass the theory test for motorcycles and then the moped practical test to obtain your full moped licence.

If you passed your car driving test before 1 February 2001 you are qualified to ride a moped without L plates (and/or D plates in Wales), although it is recommended that you complete CBT before riding on the road. If you passed your car driving test after this date you MUST
complete CBT before riding a moped on the road.

Licence categories for mopeds and motorcycles

Category AM (moped) – minimum age 16

  • two-wheeled vehicle with a maximum design speed of 45 km/h (28
  • three- or four-wheeled vehicle with a maximum design speed over 25
    km/h (15.5 mph), up to 50 cc and with a power output not exceeding 4 kW.

Category A1 – minimum age 1727

  • motorcycles up to 125 cc, with a power output not exceeding 11 kW
  • tricycles with a power output not exceeding 15 kW.

Category A2 – minimum age 19

  • motorcycles with a power output not exceeding 35 kW.

Category A

  • unrestricted motorcycles with a power output over 35 kW (minimum age 24 under direct access, or 21 under progressive access)
  • tricycles with a power output over 15 kW (minimum age 21).

Progressive access is a process that allows a rider to take a higher-category practical test if they already have at least two years’ experience on a lower-category motorcycle. For example, if you have held a category A2 licence for a minimum of two years, you can take the category A practical test at age 21. There is no requirement to take another theory test.

If you want to learn to ride motorcycles larger than 125 cc and with a power output over 11 kW, you MUST meet the minimum age requirements, satisfactorily complete a CBT course and be accompanied by an approved instructor on another motorcycle in radio contact.

To obtain your full moped or motorcycle licence you MUST pass a motorcycle theory test and modules 1 and 2 practical tests on a two-wheeled motorcycle.

You MUST NOT carry a pillion passenger or pull a trailer until you have passed your test. Also see Rule 253 covering vehicles prohibited from motorways.
Law MV(DL)R reg 16




Last updated: 16 July 2015

Biker Down – New dates announced

Three more dates have just been announced for the popular BIker Down workshops run by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service Fire Bike Team. Workshops will be held at Cullompton Fire Station, Devon Travel Academy, Exeter and Exmouth Fire Station.
Anyone wanting to see the complete list of dates and/or book a place can do so here Why not attend this free workshop with a group of your biker mates.

Biker Down success


Last Saturday (25th July) another group of keen motorcyclists set aside 3 hours of their valuable time to attend the new Biker Down course run by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Fire Bike Team. Those who attended the FREE short course now know the basic lifesaving measures that can be taken when managing the scene of an RTC and applying basic first aid. The course was held at Minehead Fire Station and is one of a number of Biker Down courses that is on offer to any bikers in the South West. The Fire Bike team have been overwhelmed by the response to the course and will be announcing more dates very soon. You can register your interest by adding yourself to the Biker Down waiting list – send an expression of interest to

Biker down

Biker Down Launch

Biker Down Launch


The first Biker Down workshop was launched at the Devon travel Academy, Westpoint, Exeter, on Saturday 6th June.  The course was a resounding success. Eighteen motorcyclists attended and here are just a few comments made by them at the end of the event:-

“Excellent delivery of this first Bike Down workshop by DSFRS.  Plenty of great tips and knowledge passed over.  I cannot praise this workshop enough and would urge anyone interested to log their interest and attend this workshop.  Really really very good.  A big thanks to the whole team for their excellence”

“Thanks very much to the DSFRS Team.  An enjoyable and interesting interactive and practical course,  well presented and paced.  Good fun, with lots of information, plenty of coffee and free first aid kit thrown in.  Definitely worth attending.  Thanks”

“Perfect presentation by all”

“Found this really good and informative, very well presented by the team thank you”

“Well presented and informative”


For further information on how to sign up to future events click here

Biker Down coming soon to the Southwest

Would you know what to do if you came across a fellow rider who has been involved in a collision and you are the first person on the scene? Biker Down will show you everything you need to know. The short course will be delivered by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue services fire bike team. It is a FREE 3 hour workshop for motorcyclists. It consists of 3 modules including , Scene management, First aid and, The science behind being seen. Biker down screen clip

To find out how to book a place on this workshop contact us at or phone 01392 444773. Please find us, like us and share our page on Facebook at

The Martin Jennings “Silver Jubilee” Memorial Run

On the First and Last MCC website is a big thank you to all riders and supporters of the Martin Jennings Memorial Run, it started from Garras Wharf Car Park, Truro, on the 9 Sept 2012 and they raised a shed load of cash all in the name of charity, this years charity was The Pheonix Stroke Appeal. A big thank you was posted on the site:

I would like to say thankyou to everyone from far and near who attended the run today.

The weather was perfect for an incident free run, and hardly anybody getting lost which makes a change!!!

The only booking by the police who did a great job, was for someone riding his bike with no helmet on the highway in front of the police at the lunch stop.

To read more great comments go to their website, or see some of the bikes on the Facebook page it looked like a fantastic day, maybe next time!

Man released on police bail after fatal bike crash

A MAN has been released on police bail after a biker in his 70s was killed in a horrific collision near Liskeard. The driver of a BMW, a 37-year-old from St Austell, was arrested for causing death by dangerous driving on Thursday, after the fatal collision in the Glynn Valley.

Emergency services were called to the Halfway House Inn at Two Waters Foot after a lorry and a motorbike collided. The motorcyclist was a man from the Liskeard area who had been travelling eastbound towards Liskeard when he came into collision with a car and a heavy goods vehicle which were travelling in the opposite direction. Police said he was pronounced dead at the scene. They said it was believed six vehicles were involved in the crash and the arrested man was not the driver of the lorry, but was the driver of a third vehicle. He has been released on bail with no charges brought against him until January 9 while officers continued their investigation.

Police would like to appeal for witnesses to this incident – either the incident itself or to any details immediately before the incident took place – to contact them on 101 and quote log 396 of 6 September 2012.

Record Number Attend a Sunny Plymouth Bike Night

After a couple of cancellations, Plymouth Bike Night drew record numbers of motorcyclists the Plymouth Hoe. The late summer sun meant that about 400 riders paid at least the minimum one pound to take part in the event. The previous record for 2012 was 338. The turnout puts Plymouth Bike Night back on track after bad weather cancelled the events in June and July.