Mercedes-Benz Citaro for Potsdam fire and rescue services

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Daimler Buses has supplied a new 12m Citaro LE Ü to transport company Regiobus Potsdam Mittelmark in Bad Belzig, west of Berlin. The bus will normally be available for regular services, but its equipment will allow it to serve as a rescue bus in emergencies. The bus will be available to support the fire and rescue services and used to transport uninjured or slightly injured people, as an air-conditioned and heated accommodation option, and for evacuation in emergencies. Rescue workers can also use it for transport or as a place of retreat at large-scale emergencies. The bus is on standby around the clock, with the request made via the regional control centre of the fire brigade.

The new Citaro carries a bright red livery, with picture of active firefighters from the district and the fire service emergency number 112. It is equipped with two LED rotating beacons at the front and rear, four front flashers and a four-horn siren system. The bus is Tempo 100 certified and the specially trained Regiobus drivers are connected to the rescue control centre at all times via a separate cell phone connection. Thanks to the latest technology, the bus’s own navigation system receives the deployment coordinates directly from there.

The interior features wood-effect flooring and felt panels on the walls. The Inter Star Eco seating is upholstered in a blue and yellow fabric. Material for medical first aid, drinks, blankets and even a cuddly toy for children are stored in an additional cupboard behind the driver’s cab. Curtains are fitted, to shield the interior from prying eyes, and can also be used for subdivision when caring for the injured or when the bus is used as a changing room.

“We are proud to be able to support the important work of the rescue workers in our region. With the new rescue bus and its expanded equipment, we can react even faster and help those affected and the emergency workers even better,” said Hans-Jürgen Hennig, Managing Director of Regiobus. The new rescue bus replaces a previous model that was converted five years ago. Its use was requested on average once every three months, such as in the event of serious car accidents, forest fires or evacuations from burning buildings.

The two-axle Citaro LE Ü is low-floor as far as the rear axle. The vehicle for Regiobus is equipped with two electrically powered pivoting sliding doors, LED headlights, a tyre pressure monitoring system and Mercedes-Benz’s Sideguard Assist. It is powered by the most powerful version of the six-cylinder in-line Mercedes-Benz OM936, producing 260 kW (354 hp), and a ZF torque converter automatic transmission.

The rescue bus also has double glazing, a reversing camera, an acoustic and optical door-closing warning system on door two with a red LED light strip, a freezer at the front and a trailer hitch. Additional starter batteries are fitted, as are WiFi and double USB sockets.

Regiobus Potsdam Mittelmark operates services in the Potsdam-Mittelmark district west of Berlin. It operates most regional bus routes in the rural district, connecting its 38 municipalities with the state capital Potsdam and with Berlinusing a fleet of around 160 buses on 66 routes.