Since January this year, the East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) has been operating with great success ten new ambulances supplied by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. As part of the Accident and Emergency fleet, the ambulances are used for urgent calls, in addition to carrying out specialist transfers assisting a full range of patients from neo-natal and paediatric to geriatric.
To provide this vital service EMAS chose the long wheelbase versions of the Volkswagen LT35 and LT46. The Volkswagen LT is becoming increasingly popular with ambulance services because of its size and suitability for conversion into blue-light emergency vehicles.
Fleet Services Manager for EMAS, Andrew Potter, was involved in the appraisal procedure to find the vehicle that would best fulfil the service’s specialist requirements. He said: ‘After a period of evaluation the Volkswagen LT was identified as providing the size of body and carrying capacity required for this conversion exercise. Furthermore, the LT is competitively priced with a proven design that gives good reliability and Volkswagen was able to deliver within a tight timescale.’
EMAS – the second largest ambulance service in England – has based its new Volkswagen ambulances in Leicester, Derby and Nottingham. Each ambulance is equipped with a tail-lift, specialist hoists and lifting equipment to reduce the likelihood of crews suffering manual handling injuries.
Three models make up Volkswagen’s LT range: the LT28, LT35 and LT46. Currently available in three wheelbases and with two roof height options, the LT offers load volumes of up to a cavernous 13.4 m3, giving a maximum payload of 2.5 tonnes. The entire LT range is powered by four impressive, fuel-efficient TDI diesel engines with power outputs ranging from 83 to 158 PS, all complying with stringent EU3 exhaust emissions regulations.
Volkswagen’s East Midlands Van Centre in Nottingham supplied the LTs and Outred & Harrison Ltd of Goole carried out the conversion work.
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