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this,” says Joe Hedges, aerial and chassis product manager. “We can reinvent this and produce a much better product.” So, what E-ONE
did was take an ISL 450 with EVS transmission and positioned it pretty much over the
rear axle, according to Hedges. The E-ONE
team configured a very low-profile radiator
package to try to keep the hosebed as low as
possible. And, it also was very cognizant of
ensuring the vehicle’s serviceability.
Serviceability to the engine was a key
component in the design of the HS Series.
“Although we could do full electric sensors, people want to see—they want to see
what’s going on,” says Hedges. “So what the
team came up with are powered body modules on both sides of the trucks. With the
flip of a couple of switches, the modules will
power back to allow access to engine components from the ground—whether it’s mechanical access to things or to be able to service
the truck. We’ve also got a top access panel.
The hosebed does hinge up over the top to
allow even deeper access to the engine area
should it be needed.” Even with the body modules, E-ONE realized that at times it is only
necessary to check fluids. “So, we provided
access panels to do all of your basic checks
for things like oil, transmission, and coolant.”
The actuators for the modules are powerful
enough to move a minimum of 500 pounds in
According to Johnson, the HS Series
emerged from observing three primary needs
in the fire service: more cab interior space,
whether for occupant seating or interior stor-
age of gear, equipment, or tools; dramatically
improved interior communications en route
and at the fire or rescue scene; and better
overall climate control for cab occupants.
“Although the HS Series solution is place-
ment of the engine at the rear of the appara-
tus to achieve these three core capabilities,”
says Johnson, “we then had to deliver other
key functional requirements including excep-
tional compartment storage space with the
apparatus body; very functional hosebed
access; multiple water tank capacities; eMAX
or conventional pump configurations; differ-
ent ground ladder storage options; superior
handling with overall vehicle driving charac-
teristics; and ready access to routine main-
tenance as well as major overhaul on power
train components and systems.”
Climate control is also significant-
ly impacted with the HS Series because the
main source of heat in the cab, the engine,
has been moved to the rear. “The heat load
is not in the cab anymore,” Hedges says. “So
from a climate control perspective, it’s a very
cool cab with the air conditioning system. It’s
much easier to keep everything cool in the
summer and warm in the winter.”
BY RAUL A. ANGULO
There’s no shortage of unique tool innovations at FDIC International. One such innovation is Breathing Limited Air Situational
Training Mask (BLASTMask™).
Lieutenant Justin Dickstein and
Captain Collin Blasingame of the Garland
(TX) Fire Department are the latest in
the special group of innovative, creative
firefighters who came up with a great
idea, designed it, manufactured it, and
are ready to market it. Here’s their story.
A constant logistical challenge in practicing
how you play and other realistic fire training
is refilling self-contained breathing apparatus
(SCBA) air bottles. Not every fire department
has the resources of a major city fire department. Refilling SCBA bottles is time-consuming and labor intensive for any fire department.
Dickstein and Blasingame struggled with
the same dilemma. They wanted to train
their firefighters to their highest level of personal performance, but such preparedness
requires their ability to perform life-saving
tasks while on air.
The challenge came up again in the annual
physical agility test and evaluations. A large
portion of elapsed training and evaluation
times were spent refilling bottles. That’s a lot of
time for units to be out of service. It also drags
out the company rotation schedule. Though
all immediately dangerous to life or health
(IDLH) training, like live fire training, requires
the use of SCBA, there are many training dis-
ciplines that do not—though it would be ben-
eficial. Dickstein and Blasingame considered,
“What if you could have a device the size of
an SCBA regulator that could attach to your
face piece and give you all the sensations and
sounds of being on air without actually being
on air? Think of the realistic training you could
accomplish without the hassle and inconve-
nience of refilling SCBA bottles.” That is exact-
ly what they came up with.
The BLASTMask is an injection-molded
plastic device that looks, feels, and weighs
about the same as an SCBA regulator. The
BLASTMask connects and secures to the
face piece the same as a regulator, and the
interior components have a pressure-de-
mand-type of inspiration and exhalation
valve or components that require the same
deliberate breathing efforts as a regular
SCBA—except you’re not on air. It stresses
the body to simulate more accurate effort
and stamina levels required to do the job.
Volunteer fire departments around Texas
immediately recognized the training bene-
fits of giving their members more simulat-
ed on-air SCBA practice without the logistical
Photo by Tim Olk.