Raf Rescue is a voluntary organisation formed in 1982, and currently has 8 active members that operates a licenced registered Motorsport Rescue Unit which provides rescue and medical cover for a wide range of events throughout the United Kingdom.
Motorsport Rescue Units are licensed by Motorsport UK (MSUK) the governing body for motorsport in the UK. MSUK specifies the minimum levels of rescue and medical equipment that a licenced Rescue Units must carry. MSUK carry out regular inspections of Motorsport Rescue units to ensure that standards are maintained.
Raf Rescue carries a selection of hydraulic powered tools that can cut and spread and battery and 220 Volt reciprocating saws that allow us to free a trapped competitor from their car. This is similar to that carried by the UK Fire and Rescue services. The medical equipment carried is similar to that carried by an NHS ambulance and includes a defibrillator.
Raf Rescue operates an ex-RAF Mercedes Sprinter 4 x 4 ambulance and is based in Preston, the volunteer crew members are based throughout the UK.
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Raf Rescue provides event organisers rescue and medical cover to deal with the unforeseen incidents that may happen during an event.
Motorsport can be dangerous and the unexpected can happen in the most diverse locations, be it in a forest or road rally, racetrack, sprint or hill climb events.
Motorsport UK stipulate the requirement and numbers of MSUK Rescue Units to be present at the event to provide optimum safety cover.
Most competing cars in motorsport are governed by safety regulations including roll cages, full safety harness and fire suppression systems, not forgetting the competitors PPE.
Motorsport UK Rescue Units are crewed by a minimum of 2 licensed crew for rallies and minimum of 3 for speed events.
On all events it is a MSUK regulation that a Doctor or Paramedic is on the Rescue Unit.
The Rescue Unit is part of the event Safety Team and works alongside a Recovery Unit at an event. The Recovery Unit assists the Rescue unit at an incident and will recover any broken down or immobile competitor’s cars, which may end in diverse locations some distance from the road.
The Rescue Unit provides rescue and medical cover for the Recovery Unit while they complete recovery of competitors at the end of the event.
Raf Rescue averages around 45 days of events per year and covers approx 10,000 miles travelling to and from events.
Motorsport event locations include travelling to the North of Aberdeen, Isle of Mull, Border Counties, North West, North East, North Wales, South Wales, East Midlands, Isle of Man, and several locations providing cover for World Rally Championship (WRC) team testing.
We have supported and provided rescue and medical cover for the following championships:
• World Rally Championship
• British Rally Championship
• British Sprint Championship
• Scottish Sprint Championship
• British and Scottish Tarmac Rally Championship
Raf Rescue have been involved in several incidents on events, always providing gold standard rescue and medical support to competitors, officials and spectators whilst attending motorsport events, working closely with the air ambulance and the NHS ambulance services.
Raf Rescue is a totally voluntary organisation that operate on contributions from providing rescue and medical cover from the events they attend, including sponsorship which the donations all go back into the cost of running this vital aspect of motorsport safety provider.
Because all the equipment carried on Raf Rescue has to be purchased, serviced and replenished including the ongoing maintenance and repairs of covering 10,000 miles a year providing a voluntary service for motorsport.
Everything that is earned from event cover is reinvested back into Raf Rescue to keeping everything working smoothly and professionally.
The unit initially cost £26,000 to purchase before the rescue and medical kit was added so just to give you the commitment Raf Rescue are doing to provide safety to motorsports is huge.
All members of Raf Rescue are trained in the use of hydraulic and battery powered equipment, to extricate a casualty from their vehicle, and the medical equipment the Rescue unit carries.
Raf Rescue has a number of training days throughout the year as per the MSUK requirements. These cover the safe use of our rescue and medical equipment. Training updates are regularly provided throughout the year with additional training days with other Rescue Units.
New Rescue Trainee Members with an interest in motorsport are always welcome to Raf Rescue. The requirements for a MSUK Rescue Trainee, you'd be expected to attend a minimum of 10 events of different types of competition which can be organised, you'd be under supervision of the licensed Rescue Crew at all times, and medical training is also provided.
You'd be expected to carry out a formal MSUK assessment after 12 months training in using the extrication tools and a basic knowledge of the medical equipment carried on a Rescue Unit before being awarded a MSUK Rescue Licence.
Thanks to the following
Raf Rescue would like to pass on their thanks to the following for their invaluable assistance:
• The Raf Rescue Crew, the volunteers you know who you all are without you there is no Raf Rescue.
• Teva Pharmaceuticals, for their assistance in replacing our patient monitoring equipment.
• Taylors Garage Ltd, who importantly maintain Raf Rescue Unit.
• British Motorsport Training Trust , in assisting with grants to provide in the purchase of the Rescue Unit and equipment.
• The Motor Clubs, who use Raf Rescue's services to provide safety cover to their motorsport events.
• Hippo Motor Group , who helped fund our new lifesaving AED.
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