vGroup launches new BSI-compliant first aid kits


Motor accessories supplier, vGroup International, has launched a range of first aid kits through its first aid specialist division, Wallace Cameron International, which are compliant with the new BSI standard covering various classes of motor vehicle, including motorcycles, cars and passenger-carrying vehicles.

Earlier this year, the BSI published a new British Standard BS8599-2:2014 covering the provision of first aid kits across a number of different vehicle categories with the intention of improving passenger safety across the UK.

First aid equipment has the potential to save lives and reduce injury and whilst many new vehicles in the UK are equipped with a first aid kit, the majority of vehicles are not. Having a standardized first aid kit for all types and sizes of vehicle will mean that when serious incidents involving major injuries occur, roadside first-aid can be administered immediately.

The new standard recommends a small first aid kit for motorcycles, motor tricycles and quadricylces; a medium sized kit for cars taxi and commercial vehicles; a large kit for mini-buses and small buses; and two large kits for buses and coaches.



Official UK Government statistics actually show a falling trend in fatalities and serious injuries for all vehicles types with the exception of bicycles. 

According to the latest available figures, the number of people killed in road accidents fell by 8% to 1,754 in 2012 - the lowest figure since national records began in 1926. At the same time, the number of people seriously injured also fell and the total number of all casualties in road accidents was down 4%.

Within the official statistics, the number of motorcycle users killed was down by 9%, while the total of all reported motorcycle user casualties reduced by 4% to 19,310.

But, while road casualty figures overall dropped to their lowest recorded level, deaths and injuries amongst pedal cyclists bucked the trend by rising sharply. Cyclist deaths rose 10% during 2012 to 118, a five year high, with serious injuries up by 4%, with the latter increasing for the eighth consecutive year.

Observers believe the rise is linked to the number of people commuting to work by bicycle which has increased by 17% to more than 760,000 in the past decade.

Martyn Nash, Managing Director at vGroup International, commented: “While the casualty figures for motor cyclists may be falling, according to the latest Government figures, we believe that they are still at a completely unacceptable level. And yet there is no legislation that mandates that motor cycles should carry first aid kits in the event of an accident.

“The new and timely BSI standard, while welcomed, is a recommendation only, but we have sought to comply with it as quickly as possible to produce a first aid kit aimed directly at motorcycle users.

“This is in line with the BSI standard which advocates that all motorcycles, motor tricycles and quadricylces, capable of taking one to three passengers, should each carry one small first aid kit.

“Our new first aid kit for motorcyclists complies with the new standard and provides the medical supplies recommended, including items such as trauma dressings, cleansing wipes, foil blanket, burns dressing and heavy duty shears,” he said.

At the same time, Wallace Cameron has also produced new first aid kits for cyclists, even though these are not recommended within the BSI standard or by common law.

“Given the official figures which show a rise in fatalities and serious injuries amongst cyclists, we felt we could not ignore this very important sector, especially as increasing numbers of people now use cycles to commute to work,” said Martyn Nash.
As a result, the company has now produced convenient bike pouches under its Astroplast first air brand which can be attached under the seat or to the cross bar.

These include an array of medical supplies, including sterile dressings, alcohol-free wipes, saline eye wash and a foil blanket and which are very similar to those recommended by the BSI standard for motorcycles.

“We believe these new bicycle first aid kits could play a key part in helping provide emergency treatment for cyclists and in helping any injuries sustained from developing into more serious ones,” added Martyn Nash.