June 2, 2015
In last week's blog, I talked about the new NFPA 1906 standard that take affect January 1, 2016. I said that I would be discussing why this change has come about and how we, along with peers and customers, feel about this.
This change in regulations is, in large part, due to an individual manufacturer of wildland fire apparatus who has been pushing NFPA for a long time to rewrite the standard to provide a rollover protection system for standing positions on Wildland Fire Apparatus.
Their persuasive endeavor uses safety as sentiment, but in my opinion, this effort is due to the fact that the manufacturer already provides a roll over protection system; although in its current form, their product does not meet the proposed new standard.
I also ask that you keep in mind that there have never been any reported deaths or major injuries from fire fighters falling off a truck with a walkway position and safety gates located behind the cab. None. While we are not faulting the NFPA committee for trying to do what is best for firefighter safety, we do believe that because this has been so strongly promoted by one manufacturer, the net effect will do very little for firefighter safety and increase the cost of most wildland firefighting apparatus.
In my next blog, I will share with you what most of the customers thought at our booth during the FDIC event this past April in Indianapolis.