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.
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.
Drivers 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.
HydraFusion Struts used as ram for a dash roll?
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.
ALBERTA Advanced Heavy Rescue Symposium
No Laminated Side Glass in a 2017 Vehicle?
I was sent a message from a firefighter the other night asking about a 2017 vehicle that he found did not have side laminated windows? This firefighter was up-to-date on his knowledge about the FMVSS 226 occupant ejection mitigation requiring laminated side glass in all 2017 vehicles. But how can a 2017 model vehicle have tempered
Laminated Side Glass
I was sent a message from a firefighter the other night asking about a 2017 vehicle that he found did not have side laminated windows? This firefighter was up-to-date on his knowledge about the FMVSS 226 occupant ejection mitigation and laminated side glass. However, the laminated glass is meant more as a supplement to side curtain airbags. The curtains will be made larger so that they cover more of the window opening, made more robust to remain inflated longer, and made to deploy in both side impacts and in rollovers. So that is one reason why a 2017 model vehicle have tempered and not laminated glass. What is a another? Phase-in periods and credits, that’s how. Let me explain.
The FMVSS 226 phase-in period started on September 1, 2013 and ends September 1, 2017 when all automobiles manufactured must meet the new standard. So, the way vehicle models run, the 2018 models will start hitting dealer floors in the summer of 2017. That means some 2018 models may not meet the standard if those vehicles are made before to September 1, 2017. Confused yet? It gets worse!
Automakers can earn credits for vehicles that do not meet the standard starting with automobiles made from March 1, 2011 and ending at the conclusion of the phase-in, September 1, 2017. So what does that mean? If an automaker made enough vehicles ahead of the September 1, 2017 date, they could sell that number of vehicles into 2017, 2018, and maybe even into 2019 that do not meet the standard. Automakers may use this to extend product of a vehicle that they intend to stop selling or delay developing a new model that meets the standard.
The bottom line is look for larger curtain airbags that stay inflated longer supplemented with laminated or glazed glass. Hope that helps!