Ambulance Visibility
Emergency vehicle conspicuity research on livery, warning lights and
high visibility markings - photos, technical information & newsletters by John Killeen  

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 ACT Ambulance Intensive Care Paramedic Mercedes Sprinter- high visibility markings - Ambulance Visibility - - John Killeen

Mercedes Sprinter Information

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Mercedes Sprinter Ambulances                                       

This online resource page has been added in response to the demand for reliable and practical information about the use of Mercedes Sprinter vans in ambulance operations. Most of these requests have come from American ambulance organisations following the Global EMS Safety Forum webinars over the last few months. Sprinter ambulances are common in Australia, Asia, Europe, Mediteranean countries and South Africa. Canada has a developing market for Sprinter's but their use across the border in the USA is limited by the large number of manufacturers using American sourced cab-chassis and vans. The most common questions from Americans are about the amount of internal space, how do we fit all of our gear inside and then successfully treat the patient in a european sized van?  Read on..... 
Please note that most Australian ambulance and emergency services  use both Mercedes and Volkswagon vans in different sizes across the collective range of models. The ACT Ambulance Service uses only Mercedes Sprinter vans and this webpage reflects the practical day-to-day experience of operational work using the Sprinter.
(Photo courtesy of Dlouhy)
Sprinters in Australia
While Europe has been using Sprinters for many years, the Australian bodybuilders only began to convert Sprinter vans into ambulances about 8 years ago.  The changeover followed increasing exhange rate prices for Ford and GMC cab-chassis & spare parts, rising fuel costs, new upgraded national Occupational, Health & Safety (OH&S) regulations and several severe ambulance accidents. These fatal crashes tragically and clearly demonstrated the lack of occupant protection in the 1990's era cab-chassis ambulance conversions. 
                ETT Production
Mercedes vans incorporate cutting-edge european vehicle technology and safety systems
The conversion of the Sprinter van is both mechanically and electronically complex due to the sophisticated technology engineered into the vehicle by Mercedes. The Australian bodybuilders have been very successful in designing new and adaptive fit-outs to ensure the original vehicle and the final conversion is successfully unified into a safe, ergonomic and high performance ambulance platform. The Australian conversions are in demand and are now being exported overseas in increasing numbers.                         (Photo courtesy of ETT)
Different countries equal different solutions! 
Meanwhile, the europeans have many years of experience with Sprinters and they continue to develop their own equally su ccessful solutions. Australian ambulances-Mercedes Sprinters-ACT Killeen The european work and patient treatment methods differ to those in Australia. One example of this  difference is that europeans generally prefer high-roof vans allowing staff to stand-up, while the Australians use low-roof vans to minimise the vehicle height. However, both Australian and eu ropean safety standards prohibit the use of side facing seats  or squad benches in ambulances.     
(Photo: ACT and NSW ambulances staging at an exercise)

Mercedes Benz to integrate Sprinter commercial vehicle operations into US and Canadian subsiduary 
Mercedes Benz USA LLC announced today that it will assume responsibility for the sales, marketing distribution and service of Mercedes Benz and Freigthliner comercial vehicles in the United States. Central to the announcement is the creation of Daimler Vans USA, LLC - located in Montville NJ, a wholly owned subsiduary of Daimler AG. The Dodge Sprinter will be discontinued..... 1 September 2009

Video clips 
  • Very informative UKTV Mercedes Sprinter promo clip (6:37 mins) on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • Sprinter safety features video clip from Mercedes on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • VW Caddy van with ESP, slide & recovery on icy road - CLICK HERE - NEW!
  • Excellent Electronic Stability Program (ESP) video on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • Mercedes Sprinter compared to Ford Transit in a crash test on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • Fifth Gear (UKTV) demonstration of ESP on ice & snow - CLICK HERE
  • Sprinter 4WD in light snow conditions on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • Sprinter vehicle tour by US Dodge rep (ignore the first few stills) on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • An entertaining low-key 5 min video advertisement for the Sprinter on You Tube - CLICK HERE
  • Short 13sec video clip of ACT Intensive Care ambulance arriving on-scene (YouTube) - CLICK HERE 
  • Science Channel: New technology in UK Sprinters being used by Paramedics - CLICK HERE  NEW!
For more a detailed list of ACT Ambulance Sprinter features visit the news page

Some North American EMS Agencies operating Sprinter Ambulances
Norcal Ambulance                           

Lifemed EMS                                  

Adams Ambulance                         

Acadian Ambulance                        

Aetna Ambulance                              


Cape County Private Ambulance       

Pridestar Ambulance                       


Ambuserve Ambulance Service         

St Joseph's Ambulance Service        

Lifemed EMS                                    


Superior Ambulance Service             

Island EMS  Canada                           

American Ambulance                         

Metro Atlanta Ambulance                   

Oneida County EMS                           

Grady Health System                          

Northwest EMS                                   

Nash County EMS                                

West Shore EMS                                

Essex-Windsor EMS                                      

North American Manufacturers producing Sprinter variants 



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