In this side-by-side photo, the newer ambulances on the left are much more visible than the older ambulance in Northumberland County EMS

Green Ambulances Stand Out in Ontario Community

The Northumberland County EMS has begun using three new ambulances with lime green coloring and highly reflective prismatic material to make them more visible, especially at night.

The emergency medical services department of Northumberland County, Ontario, CN, this month begun using three new ambulances with safety features to make them more visible at night and safer for paramedics inside. Northumberland County EMS announced the new equipment on Aug. 15.

The county is located on the northern shore of Lake Ontario, east of metropolitan Toronto.

"We are very pleased to launch this new, innovative design," said Craig Jones, deputy chief of operations for Northumberland County EMS. "In addition to some modifications that make the vehicles more environmentally friendly, the design integrates some of the best research available in emergency vehicle visibility." With support and input from District of Muskoka EMS, the county EMS team chose a concept for the new ambulances that includes a high-contrast lime green color scheme, highly reflective prismatic material, and the use of chevrons on the rear of each ambulance. Northumberland Today's Valerie MacDonald reported Muskoka is the only other Ontario jurisdiction using the lime green color scheme to enhance visibility.

The new ambulances have twice the load capacity of the county's older ambulances, and they include a patient loading track and a jump seat with a seat belt to provide more protection for a paramedic who is tending to a patient, MacDonald reported.

They have gasoline engines instead of diesel and include technology that limits vehicle idling.

"This improved design would not have been possible without the hard work of several county paramedics who volunteered to form a team to ensure that best practice design elements were incorporated into the new vehicles," Jones said. "On behalf of the county, I would like to thank the following individuals for their contributions to this process: Bob Cranley, paramedic; Jorma Kortman, paramedic; Mike Martin, paramedic; and Trevor Mackey, superintendent."

Jones provided the photo used with this article to show how much more reflective the new ambulances are when parked beside an older ambulance in the department's fleet. "Thank you for showing interest in our design. We are very proud of it, we feel based on the scientific evidence we used that it is the very safest design on the road. The intent is to create a safer 'office' for our paramedics," he wrote in an email.

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