Ambulance Standard Out for Review

The industry's first true ambulance standard is taking shape. Here's what to know.


The National Fire Protection Association's proposed new ambulance standard is available for public review, and comments are welcome through December 15.

The standard, NFPA 1917, is available here. The NFPA emphasizes that this version is a draft, and as yet has no official status. To download a proposal form or submit feedback online, go to the "Next edition" tab at www.nfpa.org/1917.

Highlights of the proposed standard include:

  • A required vehicle data recorder to track speed, acceleration and deceleration, braking events, seat belt usage and more;
  • A stability control system with steering wheel position sensor, vehicle yaw sensor, lateral accelerometer and individual wheel brake controls (or, alternatively, a top speed capped at 60 mph);
  • Interior surfaces free of sharp corners and projections;
  • Equipment securely stored or attached;
  • Requirements for retroreflective exterior markings.

Another draft is planned for February, and the final standard is expected to be completed by 2012. Once that's complete, the federal government will stop revising the existing KKK purchase specification.