My first thought when I saw the title “Blood Bikers” was that I was about to watch a 10-minute short documentary about a biker gang and some exclusive insight into their organization. As soon as I saw the bright yellow livery of the UK emergency services, however, I understood the title was a lot more literal than I had anticipated.
Certain motorcycle gangs have a bad rep for their association with crime and drugs, like mafias on wheels. However, not all gangs mingle into some shady stuff and as badass as “Blood Bikers” might sound for a criminal organization name, these riders are actually good guys helping save some lives. Think of a gang of anonymous Batmans riding about town.
UK’s “blood riders” are volunteers on motorcycles who help England's National Health Service haul precious cargo to hospitals and patients in need. By precious cargo, I really mean blood, organs, medical equipment. The documentary follows some of these anonymous heroes in helmets on their calls as they taxi live-saving goods on the streets of England and exposes the reality of getting calls in the middle of the night. The unit of volunteer riders is able to answer calls and deliver a lot faster than cars and ambulances thanks to the versatile and agile nature of their rides that allow them to lane split and lane filter when lives are hanging in the balance.
The riders interviewed in the David Hayes film all have stories to share about what makes them want to contribute to the good cause and the personal experiences they’ve had volunteering for the cause. According to the short, in 2017 alone, the blood riders completed over 93,000 runs—that’s roughly 257 runs a day. The clip is warming and will likely make you want to check in your area if volunteer riders are required—I know it did for me. Riding to save lives, there are much worst reasons to want to jump in the saddle.