Thread: Rig Chevrons ?

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    Default Rig Chevrons ?

    We all know that the rigs must have Chevrons on the rear now but my question is must we go back and retro our older apps with chevrons? We purchased one of the last Engines right before the regulation went into affect. It has diamond plat over the entire back side and I would hate to cover that up. Visibility is not an issue with it. It has enough lights to land an aircraft.

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    Not required to retrofit per NFPA 1901

    Recommended, but not required.

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    Should you have the urge to retrofit, there's a product we looked at called Scene Dots.

    www.scenedots.com

    Much easier to put on treadplate, I'd say. We didn't buy 'em yet; they're a little pricey and we're uncertain on durability.
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    As was posted, you are NOT required to retro-fit older rigs with chevrons.

    As for retro-fitting, we also looked at Scene Dots, but we found that Diamond Diamonds are easier to apply and have more reflectivity. They're not nearly as good as having "true" chevrons on the rear, but better than nothing!
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    Thanks guys.

    I have looked at the scene dots but never did see the diamond dots. They both look good. I brought this up because one of the other county fire departments put the scene dots on everything including a F-350 pickup truck's tailgate. Its just tough covering up that nice new shiny diamond plate.

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    Again, if you want to go back and retrofit the rig, have a sheet metal shop go and laser cut you some aluminum that can be fixed w/ stianless steel screws to the diamond plate. Then have a graphics shop apply some real chevrons for a more professional look than the scene dots/diamonds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    As was posted, you are NOT required to retro-fit older rigs with chevrons.

    As for retro-fitting, we also looked at Scene Dots, but we found that Diamond Diamonds are easier to apply and have more reflectivity. They're not nearly as good as having "true" chevrons on the rear, but better than nothing!
    This is what we did also, but they went the cheap way and bought large strips of the reflective material and hand cut them. It looks great from far, but up close not as good. I was perturbed we went the cheap way because some of the squares were uneven and such, but I was surprised how much the scene dots cost. We have so many apparatus it would have been crazy expensive so I was OK with it after that. It all comes down to money.

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    Quote Originally Posted by truckmonkey42 View Post
    It all comes down to money.
    That is our problem. Now we aren't the type of FD to put money in front of safety but you have to have the money to spend. We could wait and save for the changes on the older vehicles but on the new one it could be a problem. With the body warranty, taking the diamond plate off and replacing it would most likely would void the warranty. On a $350,000 dollar engine our trustees probably wouldn't like that too much. I would like to change out the backside and replace with aluminum on the older engine but again it is money. Plus having two different types of metal in contact with each other, steel for the truck body and aluminum for the back side, can cause corrosion if not done correctly.

    For the dots or the diamonds, we do have a local graphics shop that would be willing to computer cut them for us for the costs of material only. That would save us a bunch on those.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    As was posted, you are NOT required to retro-fit older rigs with chevrons.

    As for retro-fitting, we also looked at Scene Dots, but we found that Diamond Diamonds are easier to apply and have more reflectivity. They're not nearly as good as having "true" chevrons on the rear, but better than nothing!
    We have the Diamond Diamonds. They work pretty good.
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    We got a safety grant and did everything we own. It wasn't our money so it was worth it. We had the local sign guy cut out dots from reflective sheets, a bit less expensive and it turned out OK. Make sure you do a good job preping the rig before doing the stickers or they will peel. http://forums.firehouse.com/showthread.php?t=103032 has pictures of Addison's rigs with the dots

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cappy05 View Post
    Visibility is not an issue with it. It has enough lights to land an aircraft.
    Spoken by someone whose truck has not YET been hit by some freaking moronic half-wit texting while driving at the scene of an emergency.


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    Quote Originally Posted by DaSharkie View Post
    Spoken by someone whose truck has not YET been hit by some freaking moronic half-wit texting while driving at the scene of an emergency.


    No offense meant to the moronic half-wits in the audience.
    So what are the statistics on reductions of rear collisions into apparatus with chevrons? Or how may rear enders occur per year into existion apparatus?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaSharkie View Post
    Spoken by someone whose truck has not YET been hit by some freaking moronic half-wit texting while driving at the scene of an emergency.


    No offense meant to the moronic half-wits in the audience.
    True True, This app has not been hit by anyone yet but two of our others have. They are older models with very little lighting on them. We are updating the lighting under donations for such a task and I am trying to work out carving some of that money for chevrons.

    This maybe a idiotic questions but has anyone put chevrons on diamond plate? It does not sound like a good idea but it does not hurt to ask.

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    Quote Originally Posted by neiowa View Post
    So what are the statistics on reductions of rear collisions into apparatus with chevrons? Or how may rear enders occur per year into existion apparatus?
    Interesting question. I have seen numerous EMS agencies begin using these chevron items as well.

    The intent of my comment was somewhat lighthearted. I think that engines, ladders, and ambulances ought to be roving strobes and the loudest sirens.

    We have to overcome morons texting while driving with their windows up and their stereos blasting at top level from thier iPods. And apparatus will still get hit.

    Several times a year in Massachusetts alone we see stories about State Troopers at road details or MVCs or traffic stops getting rear ended by some asshat on the roads despite lights being activated (and the back of a MSP car has so many lights and flashers it makes you have a seizure.)

    Nothing is a guarantee, but we have to keep folks as safe as possible. However most lighting is facing the front of the vehicle and these chevrons do not break up the truck as much as one might think despite the bright nature of the colors and contrast. I think more lighting needs to be aimed behind the vehicle as well.
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    I think you'll find current thinking is that there can be too much light in the way of blinky-flashy emergency lighting. The lights are distracting and attract the eye and when there is too much the driver loses sight of the actual outline of the apparatus and the people (us) around the apparatus. Of course conventional wisdom would say if one cannot see well, they should immediately take their foot off the accelerator, we we know that's a stretch for most drivers.

    Apparatus needs to be visible without being distracting to the point that our PPE, and now DOT approved vests, are not seen. This includes potentially using only amber to the rear when stopped, reducing the number of lights and using reflective striping to define the outer perimeter of the apparatus.

    I personally was not a fan of NFPA mandating the yellow/red colors for chevrons, but upon seeing a few apparatus with different schemes, it was easy to see why they chose the yellow/red as it stood out far better than other color combos.

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    I have agreed with RFDACM about this several times in the past. On the rear, use less lights and more reflective.

    Use larger, more slowly flashing lights on the rear, as you want to deliver the message to slow down, which the slow flash rate will do.
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    Pick a color,any color. It WILL NOT keep the distracted or drunks off your tailboard. We had a drunk run a roadblock(FD)and almost pick off one of our LEO's Sunday night at a head on.It took him nearly a mile to catch the car. The operator was promptly arrested for DUI as was the operator of one of the vehicles in the head on. T.C.

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    While you can never have enough lights and reflective tape to keep everyone from hitting you. I think it is a sort of bell curve, you can have too few lights/reflective tape or too much. You need enough to get someone's attention, but not too much that you blind them.

    RFD seems to be on the mark. More reflective and slower "calmer" lights to the back. If this isn't enough to get someone's attention, I don't think having more will solve the problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nameless View Post
    RFD seems to be on the mark. More reflective and slower "calmer" lights to the back. If this isn't enough to get someone's attention, I don't think having more will solve the problem.
    I can't take any credit here, most everything I've learned from others or picked up on the highlights here and there. Box187 noted the slower lights which I agree, having seen the large lollipop style rear amber lights on the DCFD engines, add in the chevron and rear can be remarkably visible without being overly distracting. I know some here enjoy tons of chrome, beautiful paint jobs and lots of high-tech lighting, but I'm more impressed with the "war wagons" that are based on functionality first and everything else a distant second.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RFDACM02 View Post
    I can't take any credit here, most everything I've learned from others or picked up on the highlights here and there. Box187 noted the slower lights which I agree, having seen the large lollipop style rear amber lights on the DCFD engines, add in the chevron and rear can be remarkably visible without being overly distracting. I know some here enjoy tons of chrome, beautiful paint jobs and lots of high-tech lighting, but I'm more impressed with the "war wagons" that are based on functionality first and everything else a distant second.
    I can't agree more. The last engine and truck we got have this style. I have to agree. It is visible with out being distracting.
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