Pickup Truck Crash Testing

Rescue personnel will relate the results of crash testing of the real world responses to pickup truck crash scenerios.

Real world implication: Shifting of the cab will cause the impact side of the pickup to crush inward trapping occupants. All edges along the hinge or latch side of the door will be closed tight. This makes setting up a door to be forced open more difficult. At the same time, the opposite side of the pickup will stretch wider than normal. Both the door hinges and the latch assembly should be visible in the wide seam areas along the door.

As the lightweight front ends of these small pickup trucks crushed upon impact, the battery located under the hood was damaged. The Ford Ranger battery actually broke loose from its' mounting and was physically smashed open.

Real world implication: First due companies at crash scenes must quickly determine the location and status of the vehicle's battery. Be prepared to find a battery that is completely broken open, with leaking battery acid splattered throughout the immediate vicinity.

Task: Given photographs of 1998 small size pickup trucks crash tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, rescue personnel will explain how specific crash test results indicate potential fire, medical and extrication challenges at real world pickup truck crash scenes.

Ron Moore, a Firehouse contributing editor, is a battalion chief and the training officer for the McKinney, TX, Fire Department. He also authors a monthly online article in the Firehouse.com ?MembersZone? and serves as the Forum Moderator for the extrication section of the Firehouse.com website. Moore can be contacted directly at Rmoore@firehouse.com.