Scottsdale ambulance technology receives national EMS safety award

Maricopa Ambulance CEO Bryan Gibson and Scottsdale Fire Chief Tom Shannon meet to begin the partnership between the two agencies for 9-1-1 emergency ambulance service. (Submitted photo)

Maricopa Ambulance’s Scottsdale ambulance technology receives a national EMS award for safety.

The safe driving technology in Maricopa Ambulance’s Scottsdale 9-1-1 ambulance fleet has received a national EMS award by the American Ambulance Association for Patient and Employee Safety.

According to a press release, the award recognizes collision avoidance, traffic pre-emption and drowsy driving prevention. The Scottsdale 9-1-1 fleet is said to be one of the first ambulance fleets in the country with Safe Drive Systems, an aftermarket collision avoidance and lane departure system.

Also, Maricopa Ambulance implemented Street Eagle driver behavior monitoring to identify poor, unsafe driving habits; provide improvement incentives and strategies, detailed the release.

Maricopa Ambulance’s trial of a drowsy and distracted driving prevention system called, SeeingMachine Guardian uses in-cab sensors and cameras to track the driver’s eye movement and face to provide in-vehicle alerts, notifying on-duty supervisors of fatigue or distractions, the release noted.

The technology in Maricopa Ambulance’s Scottsdale 9-1-1 ambulance fleet received the national EMS award for its continuous efforts to create a culture of safety and raising the bar for vehicle safety standards in the EMS industry, described the release.

Beginning with the 10 ambulances to serve the City of Scottsdale 9-1-1 contract, Priority Ambulance launched a nationwide comprehensive, multi-year vehicle safety initiative to reduce risks association with traffic accidents, unsafe driving behaviors, distracted driving, fatigued driving and patient safety.

“We knew that in going with Maricopa, safety was going to be a No. 1 priority,” said Scottsdale Fire Chief Tom Shannon in a prepared statement. “The safety strategies include the huge investment they’ve made in technology in their units to keep vehicles within the lanes and forewarn about upcoming traffic and hazards, as well as the policies and procedures that we engage in and negotiate in terms of our deployment strategies to make sure that we get to the call appropriately.”

The Scottsdale 9-1-1 fleet is one of the first ambulance fleets in the country to have Safe Drive Systems, an aftermarket collision avoidance and lane departure system. Maricopa Ambulance takes advantage of safety options installed in the City of Scottsdale’s infrastructure, the release noted.

Scottsdale 9-1-1 ambulances are equipped with Opticom traffic signal pre-emption equipment that clears traffic when an ambulance responds to an emergency. All vehicles in the Priority Ambulance fleet are equipped with standard patient and crew safety features, the release stated.

The company is in a three-year implementation period for deployment of driver behavior monitoring technology, collision-avoidance and lane-departure technology, as well as driver-feedback technology for mitigating drowsy and distracted driving incidents, the release said.

The company wants to integrate the systems tested in Scottsdale in to fleets in Indiana and New York, the release added.

Priority Ambulance will accept the award at the American Ambulance Association’s Annual Conference and Awards Dinner in Las Vegas on Sept. 7.

Maricopa Ambulance’s 10-vehicle fleet to provide 9-1-1 service to the City of Scottsdale gathers at Pinnacle Peak before going into service in Feb. 17, 2018. The fleet is one of the first in the country to be equipped with aftermarket collision avoidance and lane departure technology. (Submitted photo)

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