At REV Group, Inc., we’re in the business of manufacturing specialty vehicles, and with that “specialty” label comes unique challenges to make all of our products especially safe. How do we protect the passengers in our buses, the families in our motor coaches, the paramedics in our ambulances and the employees in our terminal trucks? What about those driving our mobility vehicles, or the firemen racing to an inferno? Even our ride-on or walk-behind sweepers need to be safe.
So that said, with so many different uses, how do we make our specialty vehicles the safest on the road today?
Well, it starts with lots of testing, crash testing included.
Every one of our 23 vehicle brands meets and exceeds industry safety standards. From handling tests to crash simulations, all of our new REV designs are tested and tortured to the extreme, and while the tests vary from brand to brand and industry to industry, one thing is certain — safety is one of REV’s top priorities, no matter the specialty vehicle.
And because every vehicle is “special,” there’s no cookie cutter solution when it comes to safety. Our brands take great pride in creating innovations that make drivers, passengers and passing vehicles more safe thanks to our products. Often, our safety features are industry-first innovations because when it comes to safety we would much rather lead than follow.
Take for instance our lineup of luxury motor coaches. In 2014, we introduced an industry-first, walk-through emergency exit door in the rear of the American Coach Eagle. Since then, others in the industry have tried to duplicate this feature with little comparison. REV’s retractable emergency door, now also optional in select Monaco coaches, sits over the bathroom toilet. This emergency door is designed to look like floating shelves when closed. When deployed, the shelves function as steps, complete with non-skid surface on the underside. Up until model year 2016, the emergency exit — much like an airbag — only allowed for a one-time use. Now, the door can be used infinitely, allowing families to practice their escape routes whenever they want. Long gone are the days of egress windows.
Meanwhile, REV’s wheelchair accessible vehicles — ElDorado Mobility — feature the industry’s only stainless steel floor. More rigid than aluminum or galvanized steel, this lowered-floor design provides more protection against rust and enhances rigidity in the unfortunate event of a crash. So resilient, ElDorado backs this stainless-steel floor with an industry-leading, seven-year, 70,000-mile warranty.
Every time Toyota, Dodge or Chrysler modifies the models that this brand builds on, ElDorado Mobility re-tests its conversion design, enlisting a third-party to perform the crash test. Focus is primarily placed on the rear of the vehicle to ensure that the relocated gas tank can withstand a rear crash. Thanks to all of this testing, the original safety rating of Toyota, Dodge or Chrysler is upheld and never once sacrificed.
At REV Group, there’s something else we’re not willing to sacrifice — the safety of the men and women who help save lives, whether it’s here in America or in another country where our emergency fleets can be found.
Unfortunately, with these two professions come inherent risks at every light, on everyhighway and at any speed. According to a 2014 report released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, ambulance accidents accounted for an estimated 4,500 accidents each year during a 20-year period with 35% of those accidents resulting in injury or fatality. Of those killed, 21% were passengers in the ambulance. Meanwhile, in a 10-year span, fire trucks were involved in an average of 3,100 yearly accidents. Rollovers accounted for 66% of those accident fatalities. But at REV Group, we strive to do everything in our power to make these units the safest on the road.
From cushion systems to impact walls, from multi-point seat belts to strategic air bag placement, each brand touts its own unique safety innovations, and of course, these vehicles undergo rigorous safety testing because life is too precious not to take extra safety measures.
E-ONE, our fire apparatus brand, takes safety a step further with the ProTech system, featuring the unique OnGuard® collision warning and mitigation system. This system detects developing rear-end collisions and offers audible and visual warnings to the driver. When necessary, OnGuard automatically intervenes by dethrottling the engine and aggressively applying the brakes. Our fire trucks also feature one of the industry’s strongest roll-cage cabs, and the unit’s aerial ladder boasts a 2.5 to 1 structural safety factor against structural failures and tip-over incidents. The industry standard is 2 to 1.
Here’s a video that highlights some of the many E-ONE safety innovations.
So when it comes to safety, if there’s a standard, our REV brands aim to exceed it.