BFGoodrich Revamps Fire Service Vehicle for Enhanced Safety

BFGoodrich Engineers Elevate Safety and Performance of Fire Service Vehicle in County Durham and Darlington

BFGoodrich's team of technical experts has successfully enhanced the stability and handling of a Ford Ranger, a crucial asset of the County Durham and Darlington Fire Service. This targeted response vehicle, specifically purchased for off-road duties and attending non-life-threatening incidents, faced challenges with handling stability that raised concerns among the service team.

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Published on
February 27, 2024

The vehicle's performance issues, characterized by an unpredictable shift from significant understeer to oversteer, were addressed following a series of exhaustive tyre tests at Millbrook Proving Ground. The tests revealed that while the BFGoodrich KO2 tyres equipped on the vehicle were fit for road use, the tyre inflation pressures had not been optimally adjusted for the vehicle's specific needs.

Paul Dodds, Transport Manager at County Durham and Darlington Fire Service, shared the transformative experience of consulting BFGoodrich's technical team. "Initially contemplating a complete tyre specification overhaul, we found our solution through BFGoodrich's tailored advice. Their detailed analysis and subsequent adjustment of tyre pressures have remarkably improved our vehicle's handling and stability," he stated.

BF Goodrich’s insights and expertise have allowed the County Durham and Darlington Fire Service to improve vehicle utilisation and cut costs.

The technical intervention by BFGoodrich not only resolved the handling issues but also led to reductions in tyre wear and fuel consumption, thereby optimizing operational costs and enhancing vehicle utilisation for the fire service. With over 140 vehicles, including 55 frontline response units, the County Durham and Darlington Fire Service is a vital lifeline for over 620,000 residents across an area spanning almost 2,460 square kilometres.

Brian Porteous, Technical Manager for Car, Van and 4x4 at BFGoodrich, emphasized the company's commitment to supporting the fire service's mission through this collaboration. "Our engineers' deep understanding of dynamic vehicle handling and stability, especially for emergency services applications, enabled us to fine-tune the Ford Ranger's tyre settings for optimal performance. It's our goal to ensure that the vehicles serving the community are equipped to perform safely and efficiently under all conditions," he remarked.

This initiative not only underscores BFGoodrich's expertise in tyre technology and vehicle dynamics but also highlights the importance of precise technical adjustments in enhancing the safety and efficiency of emergency response vehicles. The successful collaboration between BFGoodrich and the County Durham and Darlington Fire Service sets a precedent for future enhancements, ensuring that the fleet remains ready and reliable for the community it serves.

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