A new crop of innovative potential ambulance chassis hold the promise of making ambulance transport safer and more efficient. Before I share some of the more interesting developments, it might help to look back on how we got here.
A Ride Down Memory Lane
I started working in EMS on a Tuna Truck. It was an International Harvester over-the-cab truck with a windowless aftermarket box on the back. Then I graduated to a real ambulance, a Superior Cadillac. In my opinion, this was one of the best emergency vehicles ever produced.
When I later moved to standard Type II van-based ambulances and Type I truck-based ambulances, I began making excuses for why I needed to spend the day in one of the last Cadillacs.
Over time I noticed a trend toward build bigger and bigger ambulances. It seemed like EMS vehicles were in an arms race to build the biggest monster. Some of these include the Kenworth D270 Chassis, the Hino 258ALP and International TerraStar chassis.
It got to the point where in one major city the ambulances were so big they couldn’t fit on the tiny roads; paramedics had to leave the rig at the end of the street and carry patients down to the corner on their stretchers. Continue