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Vehicle Extrication

Motor City Monday Extrication Tip; Key Fobs

The ignition key is used without a second thought everyday by billions of people. However, the ignition key as several safety features built into every vehicle that are taken for granted. Most extrication minded responders

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Motor City Monday Extrication Tip; Key Fobs

The ignition key is used without a second thought everyday by billions of people.  However, the ignition key as several safety features built into every vehicle that are taken for granted. Most extrication minded responders think about crash test standards when the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) are mentioned during training or in an article. However, FMVSS impact every part of a vehicle designed for the roadway of the United States. extrication-key-fob-keyless

Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 114 covers theft protection and roll-away prevention.  This standard requires that an automatic transmission vehicle must be placed in the “park” position before the key can be removed from the ignition.  This prevents vehicles from accidentally being left in “drive” and rolling after the driver exits. The other provision requires that a vehicle cannot be operated after the key is removed from the starting system.

touch-screen-Rescue-extrication-key-fob-keylessDrivers of vehicles with start/stop buttons key-less ignition with an electric key fob can unknowingly bypass the rollaway prevention features. The key fob is operable without ever leaving the pocket or purse which means the vehicle will run and can be left in drive with the key fob removed.  The vehicle can run indefinitely with the key fob out of the transmittal range and it will continue to run until the fuel is depleted or the engine is shut down.  Most vehicles with this type of key fob will give an audible alarm and visual message on the instrument panel.  Yet this warning could be overlooked.

While FMVSS 114 mandated several roll-away prevention features, vehicles with key-less ignition can be shutdown with the transmission in drive and the key fob removed.  At first look, responders my not notice the vehicle is in park, especially if the 12 volt battery is secured quickly at an accident scene.  The take away? Unless the vehicle is in “park”, it is susceptible to unintended rolling.  Unintended rolling is a possibility until the vehicle is stabilized and secured.

Mike Smith, Absolute Rescue's Editor in Chief, is a veteran of the fire/rescue service in Michigan, who also works in the automotive industry as a designer. Have an idea of suggestion for the site? Contact Mike here

Heavy Rescue

VA Spring Rescue Week

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I ran across some great pictures on the Big Vehicle Rescue Facebook Page from a training course. The 2019 Virginia Department of Fire Programs Spring Rescue Week was held at the VA Public Safety Training Center. Below are pictures from the vehicle rescue technician class. Thanks again to
John Burruss for allowing us to use his pictures. Make sure you follow his page!

Stabilization, Lifting, and Vehicle Relocation

The bus was captured with struts for stabilization. The black guard rails on school buses are strong points for struts tips for stabilization and lifting.

The bus was rolled off the car with two griphoists anchored to the duals on a semi-tractor while the Paratech gold struts chased the movement automatically with air extended the struts.

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Vehicle Extrication

Power Pole Stabilization

Here is a look at a unique extrication and stabilization that took place in Seattle, Washington.

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Here is a look at a unique extrication and stabilization that took place in Seattle, Washington. The first Facebook post is video from an area camera that captured the power pole falling on the vehicle.

Per the Seattle Fire Department’s Facebook page:

Seattle Fire’s Rescue 1 was called to a multi-company extrication with Boeing, South King, and Tukwila Fire. Over fifteen power lines were down and 1 patient trapped in a car. Using Rescue 1’s hydraulic-fusion struts, the only of their kind in the area, 1 patient was safely extricated and a total of 2 patients were transported with minor injuries to nearby hospitals.

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School Bus

HydroFusion Ram

HydraFusion Struts used as ram for a dash roll?

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HydraFusion Strut Ram

The HydraFusion Struts were a game changer when PARATECH released the lifting/stabilizing device a few years back at FDIC. Rescuers can lift up to 10 U.S. Tons (9 metric tons) and to stabilize up to 20,000 lbs. with the tool. However, PARATECH’s HydraFusion Struts are not limited to just those two functions. The HydraFusion Struts can move metal!

I first ran across pictures of HydraFusion Struts used as ram from pictures that Brock Archer (Advanced Extrication) and Randy Schmitz ( Founder/Owner of Schmitz Mittz). Last weekend at Crunchtime Extrication, Paratech had one of their trailers at the training event and I had the chance to try a dash roll with a HydraFusion Strut. Take a look at the video below.

A few quick points:

  • You can put the HydraFusion Strut in place to reduce any dash movement during reliefs cuts.
  • HydraFusion Strut are portable and can be moved quickly to a vehicle hundreds of feet of the roadway.
  • Depending on the length of the HydraFusion Strut used, strut extensions can be used to optimize dash movement.
  • Using a HydraFusion Strut as a ram is an option, not always the option.
Below  are a few pictures from the Advanced Heavy Rescue Symposium in Calgary, Alberta, that show HydraFusion Struts used a ram during bus extrication to displace a roof.

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