How Toyota’s Derbyshire factory is helping firefighters save lives on UK roads
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Manufacturer donates almost 50 Burnaston-built cars to help train fire crews
Derbyshire car manufacturer Toyota has donated almost 50 vehicles to help train firefighters in extricating people in the event of a road traffic collision.
The firm, which makes the Corolla hatchback and Corolla Touring Sport models at its manufacturing plant at Burnaston, donated 48 “trial vehicles” to Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service (DFRS).
The vehicles were recently used at the 2019 United Kingdom Rescue Organisation (UKRO) Challenge, which this year was hosted by DFRS.
The annual event gives emergency services personnel the opportunity to share techniques across a range of rescue disciplines, including vehicle extrication, helping to improve rescue standards and technical skills.
Gavin Tomlinson, DFRS’s chief fire officer and chief executive, said: “For many years, Toyota has been a long-standing partner of DFRS, generously donating hundreds of cars which have been used across the service for training and development.
“Last year, the service attended over 540 road traffic collisions, therefore, it is essential that our crews have the necessary skills, training and knowledge to deal with whatever situation they come across.
“Training using donated Toyota’s allows firefighters to be in touch with the latest vehicle technology and safety systems.
“This ensures they are able to deal with incidents as efficiently and effectively as possible, providing better outcomes for road users involved in a collision.”
Neil Odin, chairman of the UKRO, said the donated cars ensures that the rescue teams from across the UK are able to test their techniques, skills and equipment on new vehicles.
He said: “The knowledge gained from our educational workshops and rescue challenge combine to assist rescue and medical personnel to effectively deal with new vehicle technology such as hybrid and electric vehicles when called upon to deal with real road traffic collisions.”
Marvin Cooke, managing director at Toyota Manufacturing UK (TMUK), said: “All at TMUK are proud of the ongoing partnership with DFRS.
“We will continue to support road traffic collision training with the provision of trial vehicles in the future, helping to reduce extrication times – a win-win all round.”