New emergency response vehicle displayed in Lubbock

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Updated: 4/04/2013 3:48 am

The Lubbock chapter of the American Red Cross displayed a new and improved prototype of an emergency response vehicle, or ERV, that is traveling throughout the country.

These brand new freightliners are more fuel efficient and more navigable through narrow streets.

Shannon Smith, executive director of the South Plains regional chapter says Lubbock was one of 24 regions to view the new vehicles. Only two prototypes are in production, but more than 200 are expected for distribution within the next few years.

 "I wouldn't see this prototype coming into play extremely soon," said Smith, "They're still doing lots of research, we want lots of feedback from the communities that we serve and we want to make sure that this is a long, long standing vehicle for us. Because we take our vehicles a good 10, 20 years so it's important that we do it right."

Some major changes being tested include:

Two serving windows on each side of the ERV so that more families can receive meals and supplies faster

WI-FI capability to allow displaced residents to connect to their mobile devices

On-board techonlogy to display important and up-to-date information for clients

Smaller, more navigable vehicles and greatly increased fuel efficiencies.

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