On any given ride, the safety of the rider has to always be the first priority, whether that means gearing up with proper safety gear or getting a good night’s sleep before the big ride. An often overlooked way of ensuring rider safety is preparing your very own first aid kit. It comes as no surprise to the average rider that being on a motorcycle can sometimes be a bit risky, and when placed in unfavorable situations on the road, having a first aid kit on hand can mean the difference between a quick and easy recovery, or a dreadfully long recovery process. If you’re looking to build your own first aid kit for yourself and the safety of other riders in your group, here is all you’ll need to know.
When choosing for a container to put all of your first aid items, make sure to choose a soft pouch that will not break if dropped or squeezed—such as a plastic or nylon zip bag. Depending on where you will store your kit, you may also want to choose a bag that is dust and water-resistant in order to keep the contents of your kit clean and free of contaminants. Another important consideration would be exactly where your kit will be stored. If you’re looking to keep your kit inside a top box, you can opt for a larger bag. However, if you will be keeping your kit inside a backpack or belt bag, opting for a more compact kit may be more beneficial for you.
The most important part of choosing a container for your kit is making sure that your kit fits your riding needs the best. Our recommendation would be to choose a soft nylon zip bag that is both water and dust-resistant—however, choosing exactly how large of a container and exactly where you will be storing your bag will be up to your preferences.
The medicine contents of your first aid kit should be built around the more common type of injuries or illnesses which may take place during your ride. Because motorcycle accidents often involve injury to the skin, joints, and bones, you should be building your kit with a variety of anti-inflammatory and painkiller medicines such as paracetamol or ibuprofen. On top of this, you may also want to add on a few other medicines which may not directly treat an injury but may treat other common illnesses such as antihistamines for allergies, or medicines for any personal conditions. Make sure to consult a professional for the recommended dosage and intervals for consuming your medicines when needed.
Recommended medicines for your kit include:
- Paracetamol, (5) 500mg tablets
- Ibuprofen, (5) 200mg capsules
- Antihistamine, 5 tablets of your choice
- Medicines for personal conditions, as needed
When preparing for any wound care in case an accident occurs, it’s important to have items in your kit which seek to properly disinfect the wound from your accident. Cleaning and disinfection is the most important first step in caring for your injury so that the wound’s condition won’t worsen over time from the dirt and bacteria on the ground. Your kit should include hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol to clean your hands, alcohol pads or antiseptics such as povidone-iodine (Betadine) to clean your wound, and sterile cotton balls to assist in the cleaning process. Another important tool would be to have sterile latex gloves which could be used to prevent germs and bacteria on your hands to get onto your wound but could also be used as a makeshift cold compress for injuries.
Treating your injury after it has been cleaned will be the next most important step in an accident. As such, your first aid kit should have items that would help you, or any rider in need, when it comes to injury treatment. The first thing to put on your skin wound would be an anaesthetic ointment such as Calmoseptine in order to protect your wound from germs, bacteria, and dirt from the environment. Afterwards, make sure to use band-aid plasters of various sizes for different wound sizes. A roll of adhesive tape will come in handy when you need to fix a stubborn band-aid or cotton ball in place. It is also essential in order to wrap gauze around the affected area.
A small elastic bandage can be wrapped and compressed around a limb to reduce swelling, or wrapped around a wound for protection—remember not to wrap too tightly to allow for proper circulation. Safety pins will help fix everything in place. Additionally, riders with joint injuries from the past may also choose to have a compression sleeve in the kit which will help support and protect previous joint injuries if affected during the ride.
Recommended injury care items for your kit include:
- Hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol, as needed
- Topical anaesthetic ointment, 1 small tube
- Sterile or clean gloves (latex or non-latex), 1 pair
- Gauze or sterile cotton balls, 5-10 pieces
- Alcohol pads or antiseptics such as povidone-iodine
- Adhesive tape, 1 roll
- 2"-3" Elastic bandage, 1 roll small size
- Band-aid or other adhesive bandages, 5-10 pieces
- Safety pins, 5-10 pieces
- Compression sleeve, 1 piece if needed