Working in collaboration with the New Zealand Defence Force, Fraser Fire and Rescue Ltd has just commenced production of a fleet of Demountable Fire Platforms (DFP’s) (also known as ‘PODS’) following the successful field trials of a Prototype within the New Zealand Army’s rugged Waiouru training camp.
The Prototype Demountable Fire Platform was developed to provide the New Zealand Defence Force with a modern fire-fighting capability whilst utilising the robust 1980’s era Mercedes-Benz MOG cab-chassis which are well aligned to the tough off-road conditions within which they will typically operate. The MOG/DFP ‘match-up’ will typically be used to respond to live-firing exercises within New Zealand Army and New Zealand Airforce operating environments – additionally they will be deployed to assist the New Zealand Fire Service as and where required.
Using a modular design philosophy, we applied a number of their known design and manufacturing techniques to arrive at the finished appliance. With a fabricated light but robust steel sub-frame, supporting a 2000L HDPE roto-molded water-tank and two generously sized lockers, the DFP is a highly versatile piece of fire-fighting equipment which is light in weight enabling more equipment to be carried. Encompassing a Darley Ultra High Pressure (UHP)/High Volume diesel driven pump set, the DFP also provides 60 litres of Class A foam to support a variety of fire-fighting scenarios. The DFP is easily able to be removed by forklift, front end loader or overhead crane in order that it can be switched to a different host vehicle or set on the ground for independent operation. During fielding testing the Firefighters involved in the various exercises were impressed with the level of foam performance from both the pump-set and the high pressure nozzle (which provides for both straight and fog streams), the Darley pump-set’s ability to seamlessly change between water/foam usage, the large throw range (extinguishing from a safe distance of greater than ten metres) and the unit’s capability at hot spot destruction.
The whole philosophy behind the New Zealand Defence Forces’ thinking on this project is that the DFP unit can be easily transferrable between vehicles so that in the event of vehicle failure it can be swapped over and mounted onto any twist lock container truck deck or even off loaded onto the ground to be operated in areas where there is a static operational need (such as temporary fuel dumps). Although primarily designed to fit onto the MOG, the DFP has been trialled on the New Zealand Defence Force new M.A.N MHOV replacement vehicles on which it maybe used on overseas deployment or indeed on any other flat-bed truck with container fixings.
During field trials, the MOG/DFP combination proved extremely versatile on the most rugged off-road terrain and the UHP pump gave excellent fire cover using a minimal amount of water which is a necessity when dealing with remote situations where water resources are scarce.
Fraser Fire and Rescue Ltd is particularly excited about the potential usage of the DFP given its ability to provide flexibility with the choice of cab-chassis and the low water requirement of the pump-set.
For more information, go to www.fraser.org.nz