Alert card is a wizard in Oz for motorcyclists

Date: 07 July 2016

CRASH card image

A pioneering but simple tool for motorcyclists and responders following an accident first launched in Essex has made its way to Australia.


The CRASH card scheme was created by former south Essex paramedic Ian Burrell and the Ambulance Motorcycle Club in March 2009, and is a credit-card sized card that riders wear in their helmets.


Designed to be an aid following an accident to both the person making the 999 call and the responders, one side of the card carries the mnemonic CRASH for helpful hints which will assist the 999 call taker if a rider has come off but is not seriously injured or happens across an accident and is using the card as a prompt.

The other side gives riders space to write their name, date of birth and medication, so when an ambulance crew arrives at the scene of an accident they will identify an unconscious or seriously ill rider has a card in their helmet by a small green dot placed at the side of the visor on their helmet – and the idea of storing the card in the helmet overcomes the problem riders have of getting separated from personal belongings in the event of a crash.


Working with the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) and several casualty reduction schemes and 999 partners for its launch eight years ago, the card is now available to all UK motorcyclists and the concept – also known as Rider Alert - is available in the United States, Sweden, Finland, Portugal, Romania and Northern Ireland.


Ian, who was awarded an MBE by the Queen in 2014 for his services to road safety, said he was delighted that the scheme was continuing its international journey, added: “Treating riders who are unconscious or unable to communicate is a challenge for us. We need to tailor our treatment to their needs but that’s difficult without knowing their medical history. You can’t rely on using a biker’s mobile to contact his family because it’s often locked or broken as a result of the crash.


“The support the scheme has received in these eight years has been overwhelming.”


The scheme also won the 2012 Prince Michael International Road Safety Award which recognise achievements and innovations to improve road safety, as well as the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme Road Safety Award in 2012, and the EMS 10 in the USA the year after, which recognised it as one of the year’s most important medical innovations in the USA.


For more information on the scheme, visit .

  • Summary:

    Alert card launched Down Under