Mercedes-Benz Special Trucks provides a helping hand in mountain rescue by lending an Unimog U 4000 extreme off-roader to the mountain rescue services in Baden-Württemberg, deep in the Black Forest.
The Unimog U 4000 with a seven-seater double cab will be to the test on the Feldberg mountain in the Upper Black Forest region. With a wheelbase of 3850 mm and a steel drop-side body with tarpaulin, the mountain rescuers store all of the necessary rescue materials in modules. The four-cylinder OM 924 LA Euro V diesel engine offers performance of 160 kW/218 hp, which is transmitted to the wheels by an all-wheel drive system.
A great advantage of the Unimog extreme off-roader are its optimal driving characteristics in tough off-road terrain and the extremely impressive robustness and frame torsion of up to 600 mm when driving off-road. Among the vehicle’s characteristics are portal axles and a low centre of gravity as well extremely favourable values for the approach and departure angles (44 degrees at the front, 51 degrees at the rear), the ramp angle (34 degrees) and the climbing ability (45 degrees) – all of which make the Unimog extreme off-roader unique. In addition to this there is the maximum fording depth of 1.20 m and a lateral inclination angle of up to 38 degrees.
So-called rescue modules are loaded in trolleys in order to equip the Unimog as quickly as possible with additionally required materials for the various types of operation. On-board for emergency situations are, among other things, the cablecar module and the illumination module with emergency power generator and floodlights. The care module includes tents equipped for providing first-aid to victims. The avalanche module comprises material for organised probing for and rescue of avalanche victims. By loading the avalanche module on the vehicle, the Black Forest mountain rescuers can save on the procurement of additional materials for each of the mountain rescue stations at Belchen, Feldberg and Schauinsland.
The Feldberg area is a great place to try out the Unimog for mountain rescue operations. At altitudes of 1493 m, there reigns a harsh climate with storms and snow, as well as a steep, craggy topography. The Unimog and its off-road competence will also help the mountain rescuers to work better with other organisations. What is more, the Unimog will improve the level of protection which the mountain rescue service can offer to people, for example after floods, and if the worst happens, the team transport cab also gives them a greater transport capacity in the event of a major mountain rescue operation. With a trailer suitable for off-road use, boats, generators, snowmobiles and other heavy devices can also be taken along to difficult-to-reach places as required.