Better than ever.
At the workshop, Philipp Allwißner and his colleague Matthias Claaßen, vehicle mechanic and one of two workshop managers in the seven-strong workshop crew, showcase the advantages of the impressive Econic model: it boasts an engine power output of 350 hp, an Allison 3200P automatic transmission and a wheelbase of 4500 mm.
These details are rounded off by the chassis' permissible gross vehicle weight of 16 t. “This is essential to be able to manoeuvre around certain areas of buildings,” Philipp Allwißner explains. The dimensions of the LowEntry truck make manoeuvring narrow, inner-city streets easier and this accelerates the emergency services' response. Protecting crews' safety – an important element of fire service training – is also taken into account: thanks to the DirectVision cab, Econic drivers have a generous, direct view of the traffic situation and can also rely on support by safety assistance systems, given it is particularly important as part of emergency operations not to be involved in accidents yourself.
Philipp Allwißner reiterates: “we have really found an ideal solution with the Econic chassis.”
We have found an ideal solution with the Econic chassis.
Philipp Allwißner, Technology team leader, Aachen professional fire service
Kitting up on the go to gain valuable time.
The vehicle interior is also impressive. On the way to the scene of the emergency, three firefighters can put on their breathing apparatus in the spacious cab as the relevant equipment has been integrated into the seats. This saves valuable time when it comes to deployments as part of which smoke is threatening to take lives. It goes without saying that there are other potential applications for turntable ladders – technical assistance services such as the illumination at scenes of accidents or the classic case of an animal stuck in a tree. Philipp Allwißner clears up a common myth in this context: experience has shown that incapacitated birds are significantly more often affected by this than cats.
Getting the whole fleet going.
Back on the ground, Matthias Claaßen explains how his workshop crew stationed at "auf der Hüls" deals with maintenance, repairs and modernisations: "every day brings new challenges and we re-adapt to each vehicle. In this context, the Econic provides a kind of operational guarantee." There is hardly any downtime thanks to its durable design and easy maintenance. Consequently, one of the four vehicles in the fleet can be used not only as a spare, but also for training purposes.
Practising for emergencies.
In Aachen alone, almost 250 firefighters have been trained in turntable ladder operations. Their training was specifically geared towards handling the new Econic – just as workshop staff intensively worked on servicing and repairs. During deployments and in the workshop, every step has been trained to perfection so that the Econic is ready to serve the community – around a dozen times a day.
These are deployments that underline the vital role of the new acquisitions. Philipp Allwißner remembers a particularly critical case that occurred just a few weeks ago: "there had been a fire in a residential building as part of which we were able to rescue all nine occupants from a burning flat with the Econic. Every second counted." Seconds in which staff and equipment worked together perfectly.
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