1. #1
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    Default seated riding positions - clarification on bench seating

    So, our rescue truck is your typical toolbox for almost everything - structures, extrications, rescue, etc. It's a freightliner with a 2-person cab and a walk-in box. We've always stated it seats 8 (2 in the cab and 6 in the box), primarily because it holds 8 SCBA. But the back is just a bench seat with no seat belts and everyone is usually standing up on the way to calls due to lack of room.

    Aside from a safety issue, is calling this an "8-seater" acceptable? Looking through previous posts didn't turn up anything, but I was wondering if seatbelts come into play when counting seated riding positions. Thoughts?

    ~Skojo

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    Depends on your project. If you're applying for a vehicle, it won't come into scoring and you have a good argument for lack of official "seating."

    If you're going for SCBA, portable radios, etc. you may have to argue it if awarded.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skojo View Post
    So, our rescue truck is your typical toolbox for almost everything - structures, extrications, rescue, etc. It's a freightliner with a 2-person cab and a walk-in box. We've always stated it seats 8 (2 in the cab and 6 in the box), primarily because it holds 8 SCBA. But the back is just a bench seat with no seat belts and everyone is usually standing up on the way to calls due to lack of room.

    Aside from a safety issue, is calling this an "8-seater" acceptable? Looking through previous posts didn't turn up anything, but I was wondering if seatbelts come into play when counting seated riding positions. Thoughts?

    ~Skojo
    As a strict follower of the Kurt Bradley thinking - "Go to the guidance".

    This is what page 40 states, "Award will be based on number of seated riding positions in the department’s vehicle fleet and age of existing SCBA, limited to one spare cylinder (unless justified otherwise in the Request Details Narrative for the PPE Activity).

    "Seated riding positions" to me says seatbelts are included with each seated postions. So just because you have 8 SCBA mounted, does not mean that you necessarily have 8 seats.

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    Depends on the age of the truck. Done several where it was ye olde Ford chassis of the 70s and 80s with no belts and no capacity to put them on. The fact that they stand isn't the issue, would be lying if I said I never did that myself when up north in the walk-in rescue. But since a butt could go in a seat, it's a seat. DHS has ruled that flipdown seats in cabs with no SCBA are considered seats, even if packs can't be mounted there. Several of the trucks I've been on around here have had them, used them to get bodies to the scene and worried about where the packs were coming from later. Or stuck probies in them since they're usable at a scene.

    Long story short, it's got 8 seats. Done it in the past, will do it again when doing apps, so I'm not saying something out of the ordinary for no reason. Got no investment in their app and I think it's more than fair if they call it that way.

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    Our AFG rep addressed this during a recent presentation on this years program. While I do not recall him specifying anything like 18 or 24 inches of bench equals a seated position, He did specifically mention bench seating counting as seated positions. Remember there are many older vehicles in use out there and seat belts were not required when they were manufactured.

    Obviously modern standards are safer and most of who have been around for a while have done things as a normal matter of business years ago that would not be considered safe now. Hopefully we all continue to live, learn and improve operations and safety through the future. I would venture to say that the members sharing their experience here, writing grants for their departments and implementing these programs are a big part of the improvement solution. It just takes time and effort to continue progress.

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