The Importance of an Inspection

Very often we have our customers ask about the 125-point inspection that G.E.V. performs on their refurbished ambulances and why it is important to have one done before the vehicle goes out on the market. I would like to start with a simple example:

Not too long ago my friend Adam found out that he was going to be a father. Adam was a good athlete, was in good shape, and had no known health issues. But motivated by the responsibility of raising a child he wanted to dedicate himself to  being the healthiest person he could. When he shared this with our group the first responses were thick with sarcasm (Adam clearly appeared to be in better shape than most) or simple mantras like “Eat Better” or “Exercise More”. Lucky for all of us, Adam was taking nothing for granted and started his quest with a complete physical exam.

As Adam progressed through the litany of tests it was just as most of us expected, his blood pressure was good and his heart rate was fine. His height to weight ratio was perfect and the only medication he took was Benadryl for allergies. As he continued to have positive results, it started to look like he was in great shape maybe all he really did need were some simple mantras and a little discipline to lead a healthy life.

Just as the examination was coming to a close the doctor noticed how tan Adam was. Adam worked outside and spent most of his free time during the summer at a beach rental. As long as I can remember Adam seemed to be tan and it appeared that it had come at a price. After some tests, the otherwise healthy Adam was diagnosed with skin cancer. Lucky for us he caught it early and his treatments so far have been a success. I’m thankful my friend is in remission and I’m thankful that medicine has made so many advances, but in many ways I am thankful that my friend decided on a full physical exam to truly understand what shape he was in.

A physical examination can be invaluable when addressing ones health, but I would argue a similar value can be assigned when evaluating an ambulance or rescue vehicle.  Like our bodies, emergency vehicles have many different parts. Some companies who sell used ambulances believe in checking the “Vital Signs” and declaring that they have the  best units in the market. Global Emergency Vehicles conducts a 125-point inspection on all of our used ambulances for sale. Similar to a physical examination the GEV 125-point inspection encompasses all of the different systems that make up the vehicle including Mechanical, Electrical, Interiors, and Body/Paint .

Let’s take a look at a common example to demonstrate the value of this thorough inspection:

  • First the unit is transported to our Full Service Facility where our teams of experienced technicians will get the unit ready to be refurbished.
  • The unit will be given a full mechanical inspection. During this step we check under the hood, under the vehicle, and observe actual road tests.
  • Next, the unit will be subjected to an Electrical Inspection. During this process the technician will check all of the lights, light bars, sirens, along with heating and air conditioning
  • The Interiors inspections includes checks of the cab, locks and shelving
  • The Body and Paint team inspect the unit for dents or defects in the body or paint

Once each of these steps has been completed GEV can confidently claim to know the true condition of the vehicle and identify a refurbishing plan that will look to rectify potential issues and increase the value of the vehicle.  Without conducting this type of inspection you are simply checking the vital signs and hoping for the best.  We ask our emergency vehicles to not only be versatile, but also durable and reliable. In some cases, these vehicles might a save a life, in other cases it might simply be a matter of customer satisfaction. Whatever the case, you owe it to yourself and your organization to have the best vehicle your budget allows. Having a full inspection is key in determining the true health of your unit. Without knowing for sure you are taking chances. Often we assume that everything is “good” but how much are you willing to risk that you are right? Adam found out that a small investment of time and a willingness to be thorough can be worth a lifetime of happiness, perhaps the same will happen to you.

What are the typical steps that you use to evaluate the a used ambulance you are considering for purchase?

 

 

Continued Research of Safety Innovations on Ambulances Available in Today’s Market

Safety is an important part of all of our lives. Whether it is a mother looking after her children or an employer making sure their employees are protected from hazards, safety is an ongoing concern. Ambulance manufacturers understand the importance of safety when it comes to building their new ambulances. These emergency vehicles are often perform a duty where time is of the essence, but the safe passage of both the crew, the patient , and the public is paramount. Engineers at these companies are constantly testing and evaluating their products with the hopes that new ambulances available for sale today are safer than their previous versions.

Over time, these new emergency vehicles become used ambulances. Pre-owned ambulances can present a whole new set of challenges when they are put back into service. From disregarding proper maintenance to normal “wear and tear” these units can become less safe than when they were sold by a new ambulance dealer. Global Emergency Vehicles recognizes this and that is why all of our vehicles go through our 125-point inspection before they are  presented to the market as “refurbished used emergency  vehicles”. We are an ambulance dealer who is committed to offering quality vehicles at a fair price and safety is a key component of our company.

One of the manufacturers of new  ambulances with an excellent reputation for safety is Horton Emergency Vehicles. Horton was formed in 1968 and they were the first organization to build a van ambulance. By the mid – 1970′s they were building both Type I ad Type III models. It was about this time that they decided that safety was going to be one of the cornerstones of their operation. Horton put their new ambulances through a series of testing and evaluations and has made several outstanding innovations toward emergency vehicle safety.

The Horton Occupant Protection System (HOPS) is one of their most important contributions to the innovation process for the ambulances available on the market today. HOPS is made up of several safety features, that used in combination provide some of the best occupant protection in the industry.  To show their customers how important safety is to the company, this system is not an upgrade, but instead it is the standard on all Horton Emergency Vehicles.

The first part of the system  are seat belts. Horton employs a three-point belt system that has been  tested to remain attached at 19,500 pounds. In addition, the seatbelts allow for an EMS worker to detach the over-the-shoulder portion while keeping the lap belt secured. This allows them the flexibility of movement while keeping them secure in the event of a crash or rollover.

The second part of HOPS are the airbags. By using test crash dummies and live testing, Horton has determined that occupant injury or even death would be quite possible in the event of impact or a rollover. With this in mind, the engineers at Horton have developed two types of airbags that are deployed. There is an inflatable head curtain that works alongside a tubular structure airbag that is used in tandem to protect the occupants in the attendant’s and CPR seat.

The final two pieces that make up HOPS are the Impact Wall and the Resistance Foam Padding. Through their testing Horton has determined that traditional ideas of padding and netting or “A” bars are not the most effective. Instead, Horton has developed a resistant foam padding that helps dissipate the energy over the surface area and reduces the force incurred on impact. The Impact Wall protects the occupant from injuries sustained by impact with the front wall cabinets.

With the HOPS system, Horton has separated itself from their competition by their commitment to safety. With our 125-point inspection and refurbishing, Global Emergency Vehicles separates our refurbished used ambulances from our competitor’s offerings. Safety will always play a large role in the Emergency Vehicles Industry and should be taken into consideration when purchasing a new or used emergency vehicle.