The Stuttgart Fire Brigade has a new toy: a Mercedes-Benz Citaro urban bus-turned ambulance. Ze Germans have it slated for use in the event of a major catastrophe. The details:
This two-axle bus – measuring 12 m long and 2.55 m wide – was developed with the help of input from vastly experienced experts who work for the Stuttgart Fire Brigade and fire rescue services. So the new Citaro large-capacity emergency ambulance is not merely a means of transport for up to 15 casualties. With five treatment areas including beds for the seriously injured and ten seats for treating people with minor injuries, it is a fully-equipped mobile treatment room for moderately severe casualties, which can also be used as a mobile medical centre at major events or for transporting extremely heavy patients. The vehicle is part of the emergency response plan put in place for this year’s World Cup in football and was funded by the Ministry of the Interior for Baden-Württemberg.
As well as the powerful convector heaters, the reinforced sidewalls contain built-in mounting rails for two DIN-standard stretchers with vacuum mattresses – one above the other – in the front section of the bus. When not in use, they can be folded out of the way and attached securely to the sidewall. Two additional Stryker stretchers are located directly above the rear wheel arches. There is also a special heavy-duty stretcher equipped with AMF fastening straps to prevent slipping, which is designed to carry patients weighing up to 350 kg. The ten seats in the front section of the bus, used for transporting seated patients or treating people with minor injuries, are upholstered in disinfectant-proof man-made leather.
Medical equipment on board the bus includes five ECG unit/defibrillator combinations as well as breathing apparatus, infusion pumps, suction pumps and an IT system for recording patient details. Each of the five treatment areas also has a “mediboard” for medical apparatus, a 10-litre oxygen cylinder, infusion holders and plenty of “grab-handle” options for the medical personnel working on board. Furthermore, the vehicle is equipped with an emergency rucksack, a special emergency doctor’s bag, two emergency baby cases, a special surgical bag and an emergency case for treating intoxication. Two further oxygen cylinders are located in the seated patient area. Here the passages for the oxygen hoses can also be used as infusion hangers. In the rear area, the cabinet taking up the entire height and width of the bus features two pull-out work surfaces.
Looks like someone’s going to need to write new words for “The Wheels on the Bus” (the kids’ song). “…The ECG on the bus goes beep-beep-beep (hopefully) all around the town”