Anyone that has ever walked by a pre-positioned ambulance has probably wondered: why is that vehicle constantly at idle? That sure is noisy. What a waste of fuel. All that exhaust can’t be great for the environment.
While quick response is a factor, the real purpose that ambulances must idle—even while parked—is to keep all the electrically powered devices that they depend on running. These include vehicle heat or air conditioning; cameras and lights; computers used by the EMS techs; radios, other communication devices and vehicle security systems; electrocardiogram, defibrillators and other medical devices; and, refrigerators needed to store certain medicines.
Unfortunately, keeping an ambulance idling to perform all these tasks burns about 1.5 gallons of fuel and puts 35-50 miles’ worth of wear-and tear on the engine per hour. Multiply that by an estimated 50,000 ambulances in service in the United States and that is a lot of fuel, engine wear, maintenance and repair costs and overall reduction in service life of a vehicle.
Stealth Power to the rescue. Until now, this was the reality of keeping ambulances at the ready. Today, idle reduction technology from Austin, Texas-headquartered Stealth Power, as featured exclusively in the REV Ambulance Group’s lineup, promises to revolutionize ambulance operations.
The Stealth Power EMS Units supply electrical power to mission-essential ambulance systems, minimizing the amount of time that vehicle operators must idle their engines. These 20-amp or 30-amp rated units allow ambulances to operate systems such as HVAC, lighting, surveillance and communication systems without the use of engines or generators.
Noise pollution is also reduced, since the systems operate quietly, decreasing overall vehicle vibration. The units can jump-start an ambulance and once it is put into service, the vehicle’s alternator will recharge the Idle Reduction Pack.
The cost-savings are substantial. Stealth Power estimates that its units can save more than $16,000 per year in total avoidable idling costs per EMS vehicle.
EMS and fire departments in communities like Springfield, Missouri; Austin-Travis County, Texas and New York City (FDNY) are already adding Stealth Power equipped vehicles to their fleets, as well as hospital systems that include Northwell Health in the New York metro area and Barnabas Health in Jersey City.
Featured here at EMS World Expo. REV’s Ambulance Group is one of the world’s largest and best-positioned independent suppliers of Type I, II and III emergency vehicles to hospitals, critical care providers, plants, airports and government municipalities around the world. The adoption of Stealth Power EMS Units in our production vehicles demonstrates our confidence in this technology, as well as our commitment to a healthier and cleaner environment.
Eight next-generation REV Ambulance Group vehicles will be on display and available for one-on-one tours at the upcoming EMS World Expo, to be held October 5-7 at New Orleans’s Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Please join us at the Expo to see this exciting “green” idling reduction technology in action.