More punch with CAFS retrofit

The AT deployed by the community of Strigno (Trentino province) in northern Italy certainly wasn't lacking equipment before. But now it brings even more punch to firefighting operations. The new CAFS compressed air foam system gives crews even more options for effective and powerful firefighting.


This all-wheel-drive tank firefighting vehicle was already quite well equipped straight from the factory: a NH35 pump unit with a high-pressure premixer and a FIXMIX premix system was combined with a 3000 l water tank, 200 l foam tank, two reels, and the RM24 roof-mounted turret, giving fire fighters a great deal of flexibility and high capacities. But even apart from its impressive extinguishing capabilities, this vehicle has a number of other useful features, such as the traffic-directing device at the rear, the pneumatic light tower, LED scene lighting, and a reversing camera. With an adequate 340 hp and all-wheel drive, the nine-person crew is able to safely reach the many remote locations in the mountainous region surrounding Strigno.

From very good to even better

At the time of the vehicle's procurement, the Strigno fire department saw no need for a CAFS system, a circumstance that has since changed. The universal capabilities of CAFS convinced the local fire department to take an unusual step and retrofit their AT with CONTI CAFS 400 and the DIGIMATIC42 electric direct-injection foam proportioning.

Perfectly planned retrofit

Rosenbauer engineers used 3D models and other technologies to plan the conversion down to the last detail. They started in Italy by adapting the equipment compartments to make room for the new equipment. Then the AT was taken to a MAN-certified workshop in Steyr that specializes in converting fire trucks where the technical prerequisites for the CAFS system were installed. With the second power takeoff (needed to drive the air compressor via a hydraulic system) in place, the vehicle was handed over to the Rosenbauer workshop in Leonding.


This is where it received the DIGIMATIC42 electric foam proportioning system, the compressor unit, and the mixing chamber, which uses compressed air to expand the water/foam mixture. The existing fire pump piping and vehicle electronics were also adapted as needed. Back in Italy, the vehicle's interior equipment was installed back into the proper compartments. Finally, after completing extensive training, the Strigno fire department put the modified vehicle back into regular service.

More effectiveness - greater flexibility

For the Strigno fire department, the biggest advantage of the CAFS system is its significantly higher extinguishing power and the new tactical options that go with it. Now, they have the right extinguishing agent for whatever operational scenario may arise, whether it's plain water, high- or low-pressure foam-water mixtures, or CAF foam. The various agents can even be used in combination with each other for an even wider range of tactical fire fighting options. The retrofitted vehicle already had its baptism by fire when the new CAFS extinguishing system was deployed to quickly and effectively put out a building truss fire.


It was the benefits of the CONTI CAFS 400 system that convinced the Strigno fire department of the practicality of the retrofit. Rosenbauer engineers made their vision a reality. The smooth conversion process and the expanded tactical options make it highly likely that other fire departments will follow the example of the Strigno department and consider converting their vehicles as well.