Metz Technology on a Scania Low-Entry-Chassis

Eight Rosenbauer aerial ladders with new low cabs for Danish fire brigades.

"Low Entry": this is an addition for trucks that are equipped with deep, barrier-free entrances or low cabs. Scania's new L-series, launched in early 2018, offers both: a flat roof cab version and a special kneeling function, as is the case with urban low-floor buses. As soon as the parking brake is applied, the air-suspended cab lowers by 100 mm. The (only) step is then a few centimeters above the road and two quick steps are enough to climb aboard.

The total height is key

For aerial ladders, the overall height also plays a decisive role: in Denmark it may not exceed 3.30 m, in which case the vehicles fit under the passages according to the building regulations (minimum height: 3.40 m), even if road unevenness or abrupt maneuvers should cause the aerial rescue equipment to raise up somewhat.

For safety and because there are, of course, lower passages built before the building code came into force, Danish fire brigades opted for the new Scania chassis in their last collective tender. The flat roof version has a vehicle height of only 2,700 mm, which is around 300 mm lower than the normal roof version.

More room to go up

On top of this, Rosenbauer has built state-of-the-art aerial ladder vehicles, the overall height of which (aerial rescue kit in the stowage/running position) is well below the Danish standard specification at 3,150 mm. This gives them more "room to go up" and reduces drivers' worries about whether their vehicles will fit through the passages, gates and tunnels in the alarm area.

Rosenbauer Karlsruhe has installed a total of eight aerial ladders, all on the same Scania 4x2 chassis with low cab and a gross vehicle weight of 18.0 tons. An environmentally friendly Euro 6 engine with nine liters of displacement and 360 hp powers the vehicles. There is more than enough room for the crew of two in the two-meter-long cab. Deeply cut door windows and the large "gap" between the A-pillar and the mirror provide a perfect all-around view.

Same technology, individual characteristics

The aerial ladder structure is the new Metz XS 3.0 lifting rescue kit with a five-piece main boom and one-piece tilting cage boom. The vehicles reach a working height of 32 m and are equipped with a rescue cage (500 kg payload) with an attached pull-out platform (200 kg load capacity) as a climbing aid. Thanks to the proven joint technology, they can be positioned very quickly and flexibly and cover a larger working area than conventional aerial ladders.

While the technology is the same for all vehicles, the equipment could be chosen freely to a large extent: Some fire brigades had their aerial ladders optionally equipped with a manual or electric launcher as well as further exits in the cage to be equipped for an immediate extinguishing mission. Others also opted for a fresh air riser along the ladder park or their own portable fire pump on board.

The colors of the ladder sets and roller shutters could also be chosen individually (anthracite, silver, RAL 3000 ...) and the vehicles could also be equipped with floodlights (special on the ladder set and rescue cage). Two of the eight aerial ladders have a 360° Birdview system consisting of four cameras (one each in the front of the vehicle, in the swinging frame and on the right and left of the high equipment box) and a separate screen with four display panels in the driver's cab. Another is equipped with cameras on the cage arm and in the cage floor to monitor the cage crew and the boarding situation in front of the driver's cab.

Eight vehicles, one invitation to tender

Immediately after the launch of the Scania L-series at the end of 2017, the Danish fire brigades had already included it in their collective tender. Rosenbauer Karlsruhe was and still is the only body manufacturer to have built aerial ladders on the brand-new low-entry chassis. The vehicles were delivered:

  • Gladsaxe in the Beredskab Øst region: responsible for 70,000 inhabitants over 25 km2
  • Ballerup (Beredskab Øst region): 48,000 inhabitants over 34 km2
  • Hørsholm (Nordsjællands Brandvæsen region): 25,000 inhabitants over 31 km2
  • Roskilde (Østsjællands Beredskab region): 87,000 inhabitants over 212 km2
  • Aarhus Syd + Aarhus City (Østjyllands Brandvæsen region): 345,000 inhabitants over 467 km2
  • Silkeborg (Midtjysk Brand & Redning region): 93,000 inhabitants over 850 km2
  • Herning (Brand & Redning MidtVest region): 89,000 inhabitants over 1,320 km2