How Solar Panels Help Paramedics Save Lives while also Saving Fuel

AMBULANCES are being fitted with solar panels to power their life-saving equipment.

The devices have been installed on the roofs of 36 rapid response vehicles to help run defibrillators, sirens, radio systems, GPS and lights.

They mean ambulance crews should no longer need to return to their depots to charge the equipment or let their vehicles’ engines idle to do so while on standby between emergency calls.

South Central Ambulance Service Trust, which covers Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Hampshire, is the first in the country to fit the panels on its vehicles.

Engineers came up with the idea as the trust tries to save £30million over five years.

“It is impressive that we are the first ambulance trust in the country to do this”, John Ayling, paramedic.

The trust paid £34,560 to equip the 36 vehicles with the panels, but it hopes to cuts its fuel costs by more than £50,000 over the five years as well as reducing its carbon footprint.

Brian Miller, the trust’s green team co-ordinator, said: “South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust is taking the initiative to introduce solar panels to its rapid response vehicles.

“It will reduce fuel consumption, fuel and battery replacement costs, the trust’s carbon footprint and the need for rapid response vehicles to return to base to recharge vehicle batteries.”

A report from the trust said: “The introduction of solar panels to our fleet is just one example of the imaginative ways in which we are achieving savings whilst delivering an enhanced quality service and best care to our patients as well as benefitting the environment.”

Paramedic John Ayling of Portsmouth, said: “It is impressive that we are the first ambulance trust in the country to do this. It is a fantastic idea.”


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