New cars pose new challenges for first responders
Reporter: Corinne Hautala
ORO VALLEY, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - Firefighters from Golder Ranch and Drexel Heights had a unique opportunity to practice cutting and extricating techniques on newer model vehicles.
Golder Ranch Capt. Brian Loftus says his department trains about four times a year with vehicles, but often they are older cars.
"That's why we love these opportunities," said Loftus about partnering with insurance companies for new vehicles, "we can perfect our technique to extricate patients and give that high level of care that much faster."
With recent budget cuts to fire departments, first responders rely heavily on donated cars for training. They say getting a newer vehicle donated helps their training, because they pose different challenges than the older models.
"With all the safety improvements with vehicles you have airbags that not only are in the front," explained Loftus, "but on the sides and now with the new hybrid vehicles they run on electricity so there is a big danger of electrocution."