Industrial Fire Journal - Fire & Rescue - Hemming Group Ltd

Aerial ladders and platforms

- bigger, longer, further

Published:  01 April, 2007

Members of the Fügen Fire Brigade of Austria are eagerly awaiting this month’s delivery of a new Metz aerial L32. First unveiled in 2006, the new L32 made its public debut during Rosenbauer’s 140th anniversary celebrations.

Gerda Königstorfer, company spokesperson, told F&R: “The new L32 stands out thanks to its futuristic design which was created by the Spirit Design company, and echoes that used for the Panther ARFF vehicles.
“The design concept incorporates a new podium cover consisting of joined, extruded aluminium sections. The equipment boxes are suspended below the podium surface using Rosenbauer’s tried and tested aluminium construction method.”
Metz’s horizontal and vertical outrigger system has also been employed for the new L 32. The newly developed main control seat has been designed for the operator in line with ergonomic considerations.
Its special features consist of an extremely wide seat bucket with a width of 500 mm, a high protective bar and height-adjustable back and head rests. A swan-neck microphone with two loudspeakers on both sides is integrated into the backrest for communication purposes. The back and armrests of the main control panel are tilted backwards by up to 30° using an electrical drive. This movement takes place in ratio to the angle of the ladder and guarantees a better view of the top of the ladder and the rescue cage.
“The L32 features increased speed of movement and optimised, sensitive operational comfort through the use of an innovative, high-performance hydraulic system. The marked performance upgrade is demonstrated by the movement speeds attained, whereby an improvement of around 25% can be assumed.
“This reduces the setting times of the equipment in accordance with EN 14043 to clearly under 70 seconds, which represents less than half of the minimum requirement of the current standard,” comments Gerda.
The tried-and-tested multifunctional cage concept has been retained, with its four entries and diverse extras (e.g. a monitor, stretcher carrying and Rollgliss self-rescue devices), as well as first-class safety features (e.g. permanent outrigger monitoring and the latest surveillance and lighting technologies). More information? Visit:
HLA reaches for the sky
Currently, Bronto Skylift’s 101m unit is the world’s highest truck-mounted hydraulic platform, says the company. The vehicle belongs to the famous HLA (High Level Articulated) range, covering working heights from 69 to 101 metres high. “The 101m unit represents the ultimate in highrise rescue and firefighting capability. It goes higher and further than any other rescue and firefighting vehicle,” comments Bronto’s Merja Viilola.
Its relatively low GVW of only 62 tonnes means it can be mounted on to a 6-axle commercial truck chassis (with less than 4m transport height) instead of a trailer or special crane carrier.
“The unit has excellent manoeuvrability and driveability, making swift road transport possible, but giving access to highrise buildings,” says Merja. “If required by the customer, it is also possible to mount the unit on a 5-axle all-wheel drive crane carrier.”
Setting up and operating is fast and convenient, thanks to features like H-type outriggers with only 8m total jacking width, automatic (all jacks simultaneously) jacking, automatic levelling, full secondary control at the turntable, automatic erection and automatic drive into transport position. The integrated waterway allows immediate and efficient extinguishing.
One of the most important features of the F 101 HLA is, without doubt, the Bronto Skylift Bronto+ control system, which is geometry-based and – unlike any other control system on the market – gives exactly identical outreach under all circumstances, regardless of external influences, such as temperature, dynamic forces, friction, etc. A fault-finding facility and full remote diagnostic system (Bronto TeleControl) is also part of the standard delivery.
The Bronto Skylift F 101 HLA (says Bronto) offers:
• Best height/weight (GVW) ratio on the market;
• Fast movements due to a generously-dimensioned hydraulic system;
• High cage load of 400 kg unrestricted at all heights.
Bronto’s RLX range consists of six models covering the working heights from 34 to 68 metres. Alongside the biggest rescue platform currently available, Bronto’s other developments in this range include:
•  Added space on the rescue platform (cage for six persons); easier movement inside the rescue platform; and a special fitting which ensures stretchers and wheelchairs can be accommodated inside the rescue platform.
•  Better manoeuvrability for the vehicle (thanks to a more compact design) which means it is capable of reaching streets, corners and underpasses which were previously inaccessible to firefighters.
According to the specification, the RLX provides the highest SWL in the industry (540 kg). “This means  increased rescue capability, carrying heavier loads and more people,” says Merja Viilola.
“In fact, the industry should note that the RLX provides a better height-to- weight ratio than any other aerial platform available on the market. The Rescue Ladder eXtra versatile vehicle has been designed with a more economical, more manoeuvrable, lighter chassis.
“It’s a more compact machine which can reach higher than other models. Fire departments will find the RLX provides access to otherwise load restricted roads & bridges and that it creates less outrigger pressure on load-restricted surfaces.”
All Bronto units can be mounted onto all major commercial chassis manufactured by DC, Scania, Volvo, MAN, Renault, Tor, Sisu etc.
Comments Merja Viilola: “The Bronto aerials offer compactness and versatility with the Bronto+ electronic system for easy operation. This provides the maximum outreach with selected cage load and outrigger positioning as well as Telecontrol machine diagnosis with GSM.” More information? Visit:
New generation of LHF vehicles
 With a population of around 3.5 million, Berlin employees some 3,900 professional firefighters.
The latest addition to the arsenal of the Berlin Fire Brigade is a completely new generation of LHF firefighting vehicle which features a new chassis, superstructure, crew cabin, extinguishing technology and technical equipment.
Two further LHF 20/12 vehicles are to be handed over to the fire brigade by May 2007.
The prototype currently in service has been built on an MAN chassis with an automatic transmission system (MAN TipMatic), which can be operated automatically or manually using up to 12 forward gears.
As well as an increase in load-bearing capacity from 10.5 - 12 tons, the LHF has a corrosion-resistant, self-supporting Rosenbauer aluminum superstructure with integrated crew cabin which employs modern rib design to achieve an extremely rigid combination of chassis and superstructure.
A low centre of gravity provides the vehicle with superior handling even in unforeseen circumstances (e.g. while swerving).
Optimum space conditions for the entire crew have been created by a cabin with large doors, which is integrated into the superstructure. The vehicle has been equipped with the newly-designed N25 centrifugal pump developed in line with the latest European standards (DIN EN FPN 10-2000).
This has an output of 2,000 l/min at a pressure of 10 bar and is fitted with the electronically controlled CAFS 1000 (DIGIDOS) foam admixing system for air and CAFS foam production.
No part of this system requires washing out and in addition, the Rosenabuer LCS (LogicControlSystem) with new control panel facilitates the simple and safe operation of the pump system by any user.
More information, visit:

Aerial due from Pierce
Pierce Manufacturing Inc., one of North America’s leading fire and rescue apparatus manufacturer is currently working on delivering six new Pierce Velocity chassis for Eugene Fire & EMS in Eugene, Oregon, US. The order included five pumpers and one 100-foot aerial platform, to be delivered beginning in mid-2007.
“We ordered the Velocity chassis after seeing it unveiled in a live Web cast,” said Scott Bishop, Eugene Fire & EMS District Chief. “We liked what we saw and set up a meeting with Hughes Fire Equipment, our Pierce dealer, to learn more about the safety features and improvements.”
“The Velocity chassis was unveiled in mid-September, and since then firefighters have told us this new chassis is just what they wanted and needed – practical and comfortable,” said John Randjelovic, president of Pierce. “The Eugene order for six chassis confirms the efforts of our market research along with the work of our design and engineering teams to manufacture the ideal chassis that fire fighters requested.”
The Velocity chassis is available with engines up to 525 hp, Allison EVS transmission, dual 540- amp alternators, TAK-4(r) independent front suspension, 45-degree cramp angle, 147.8” flat cab, seating for up to 10, front air bags (spring 2007), and the Side Roll Protection system. More info? Visit

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