Guidance For Volunteer Drivers
YOUR ROLE AS A VOLUNTEER DRIVER
You will be asked to collect a contained animal from a finder and take it to a wildlife rescue where a place will already have been agreed. We ask that you are polite and professional at all times (of course you will be!) and always drive safely and responsibly.
You are brilliant!
YOUR ROLE AS A VOLUNTEER WILL NOT BE...
...to capture a loose animal, to try and care for the animal yourself, or make any decisions about its care.
YOU WILL NEED
- A vehicle which is taxed, MOT’d and insured. Please contact your insurer to make sure you’re covered for volunteer driving. See here for guidance - https://www.abi.org.uk/products-and-issues/choosing-the-right-insurance/motor-insurance/volunteer-drivers/
- A map, sat nav or map app on your phone.
- A well-charged mobile phone with sufficient credit.
- A torch (the one on your phone is fine if you have a camera phone).
- Towels to help keep the casualty comfortable, covered, and your car protected.
- Disinfectant and hand sanitizer to prevent any spread of disease.
- (Face-covering is 100% up to you. All interactions take place outside).
IF THERE'S A TRANSPORT JOB IN YOUR AREA
- A post will be made in the UK Wildlife Transporters Facebook group with the details of the casualty and where it needs to be transported from and to.
- If we think you may be able to help, you will be tagged in the post and/or receive a telephone call. If you’ve not been tagged but you can help with all or part of the journey, feel free to comment and let us know.
IF YOU ACCEPT A TRANSPORT 'JOB'
- We will run through a checklist on the phone with you, to make sure you have all that you NEED. We will run through the transport job with you (step by step) on the phone, so that you are prepared.
- You will receive an email confirming the species of the casualty, the pick up address, the Finder's info/number, the rescue you are taking the casualty to, plus the pick up/drop off protocol.
IT'S OVER TO YOU
- Please then telephone the finder to make arrangements to pick the casualty up: letting them know when you are leaving (ideally ASAP) and your ETA.
PICKING UP FROM THE FINDER
- When you arrive to collect the casualty, the Finder should place the box containing the casualty on the ground outside their front door and then retreat to a safe 2 metre distance. This should take place outside in a public place. Please do not go into the finders house.
- If the finder lives within a block of flats, for example, it will be best to call them to alert them to your arrival, rather than going into the block to ring the bell.
(The finder may offer a contribution towards your fuel, or ask you to deliver a donation to the rescue. For your protection, please NEVER accept cash from the finder. They will have been provided with information on donating electronically).
- When you pick up the box, put it in the passenger seat of your car with the seatbelt securing it and a large towel over it.
- Drive the animal directly to the agreed rescue. Drive carefully, especially over speed bumps and around corners, to avoid disturbing the casualty, aggravating any injuries and increasing stress.
- Please donʼt play music or have loud conversations while the animal is in the car. Stress levels can literally make the difference between life and death in wild casualties.
DO NOT OPEN THE BOX
Opening the box causes the animal stress, risks them escaping, and you getting bitten. If you are concerned about a casualty’s condition, the best place for it is with experienced rescuers to provide treatment ASAP.
ONCE AT THE RESCUE
- Please follow the procedures they have in place to ensure a safe handover.
- Once you have handed the animal over, please sanitise your hands and spray the car seat with disinfectant to prevent any spread of disease.
- Any towels used should be laundered before being used again.
Under charitable rules we are allowed to reimburse you up to 45p per mile travelled. The mileage rate covers the costs of running and maintaining your vehicle, such as fuel, oil, servicing, repairs, insurance, vehicle excise duty and MOT, as well as depreciation of the vehicle.
You may be happy to waive the expenses reimbursement but please do not feel obliged to.
Alternatively, it is perfectly legal for you to claim the expenses and then donate all or some of the money back to UK Wildlife Transporters or on to the rescue who took the casualty.
To claim expenses for your trip please complete this FORM.
(NB: Due to the risks and complications of storing bank account information, we would prefer to only pay expenses via PayPal).
Do I need to commit to a minimum availability or number of journeys?
No, just give us some idea of your availability and we’ll be in touch if and when we have a casualty in need of transport help in your area. If you can’t help, that’s totally fine.
Who do I contact if there’s a problem?
If you have any questions or encounter any issues, please phone us (the phone number will be in the email you receive with the Finder & Rescue's address, etc.).