01/19/09 46 W, 1 I - + 17 - 10 New Ambulances, New Striping

Wake County EMS is placing a set of new ambulances in service. Each has yellow striping on the bottom side and back, and the now-familiar chevron pattern on the front bumper. Click to enlarge this picture of EMS 4, taken this morning:

Nice bus…
Silver - 01/19/09 - 19:29

It’s an ambulance, Jeff. I do not see “CAT” or “Greyhound” anywhere on it.
RescueRanger - 01/19/09 - 21:57

Bus, rig, unit, truck, wagon, rescue, ambo, bolance, cabulance, taxi…

From one who has ridden one for many, many, many years, call it what you want. Just smile when you say it. :)
DJ (Email) - 01/19/09 - 23:04

How many did the county put in service?
4447 - 01/19/09 - 23:12

I THINK that there is going to be six of the E450s. There are also three Freightliner chasis units in production. I am not sure when the delivery date is.
DJ (Email) - 01/19/09 - 23:30

Your comment meant nothing due to your inability to “man-up” and post your name. Atleast e-mail me and let me know who I’m dealing with and I’ll give your reply some weight. Have a good day….

DJ, I was grinning ear to ear as I said “bus”...just fyi. And, I have the utmost respect for those that ride it, because I damn sure couldn’t deal with what they have to deal with day in, day out.
Silver - 01/19/09 - 23:30

What is the reasoning of going from the E-450’s to the Freightliners? Just curious
Adam Brown - 01/20/09 - 07:18

Silver, I have heard worse, trust me. After all, I ran in Maryland for a while where we were called “sh** boxes”. Me persoanlly, call it whatever- I take it all in stride, because for most, those words are a term of indearment. It really bothers me when my co-people get all upset at things like “bus”, “box”, etc. We have a lot of other things to worry about that are a lot, lot more important.

As to the reasoning behind the Freightliners, as I remember it from the committee meetings-
1. More storage space for ‘stuff’. Afterall, WCEMS is not just another ambulance service. All of our personnel have a full complement of PPE, plus the TEMS and USAR medics have more stuff.
2. More weight capacity. More and more patients are turning out to be of ‘expanded mass’.
3. There is a train of thought that the medium duty units are more economical in the long run due to a heavier duty chasis, running gear, power train, etc. This remains to be seen, for me anyway. I have worked for two services that used medium duty units and the results were mixed (although Smithfield did get about 7-8 hard years on a 1995 Freightliner). We did, however, take a look at their experiences and adjusted a few things.
4. There is a safety factor with a bigger truck.
5. The E450s have been ‘troublesome’ to say the least. And that is not just a Wake County problem- it is nationwide.
DJ (Email) - 01/20/09 - 10:29

DJ hit almost all of the points in the business case. This is a “test of concept” because, to our surprise, no other service has developed a cost comparison of the light versus medium vehicles over a complete life cycle. Wake County will be examining that in great detail over the next few years.

Also, one of these trucks will be set up specifically to deal with bariatric patients. It will have a hydraulic patient lift on the rear, power stretcher, and other bariatric handling equipment that would not fit either on a light ambulance or in a supervisor vehicle.

CHIEF100 (Email) - 01/20/09 - 11:07

It is amazing that there has never been a true cost comparison of ‘light duty’ vs ‘medium duty’. All of the argument that I have ever heard was based upon a ‘well, it ought to work better’ thought process. One of my former employers that put a lot of meduium duty units on the road has made the move back to lighter duty chasis, the GMC in particular (glad to see someone getting away from Ford). The other service used one for several years as the ‘always first out unit’, which it lasted from 1996 to about 2003-4-5 or so. It incurred some major expenses, but I don’t think it was a good comparison, since it was ‘run into the ground’.

The biggest two drawbacks, IMHO, are-

1. They ride like crap in the back. Maybe the newer ones have this worked out, but I have administered a lot of morphine over the years to overcome the ride.
2. They are hard on the body getting into and out of them several times a day. Within about a month of coming to Wake from the ‘Empire’, my back and shoulders stopped hurting all of the time…

We’ll see how it goes.
DJ (Email) - 01/20/09 - 14:04

I always like the name Pus Bus for them. As tagged by a Lt. from FDNY. It just has a nice ring to it.
Mike - 01/20/09 - 18:50

Be careful Mike, some people might really start crying over that one (RR)...
Silver - 01/21/09 - 10:40

“Pus Bus”...been a while since I heard that one…ah…the memories…
DJ (Email) - 01/21/09 - 13:44

I just simply call it “my very loud other truck.”
CJS (Email) - 01/21/09 - 16:46

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