Did you realize that roughly 20% of the US population, or one in five people, lives in what’s designated as a rural area of the country? People who live in these areas need all the same kinds of emergency and first responder services that those who live in cities do, and there are many reasons why the use of LED lights on such vehicles are extremely useful and beneficial within these rural areas.
At LED Equipped, we’re proud to offer the industry’s widest selection of emergency vehicle light bars, dash lights and numerous other related products. We’ve assisted first responders and many other similar clients from all around the country with their needs here, including those who operate in rural areas. What are some of the challenges facing first responders and emergency personnel in these areas, and how do LED lights help solve many of these? Here’s a general primer.
Challenges for First Responders in Rural Areas
There are a few elements of many rural areas that can make them a bit more challenging for first responders and any other kind of emergency personnel. Here are a few:
- More poorly-lit areas: While rural areas offer a getaway from the constant hustle and bustle of a city, this does often come at the expense of having less lighting in general. This can make it more difficult for first responders to find an address or even see potential hazards on the road ahead. For instance, a deer crossing the road may not be visible until it’s too late, or an address may be hidden in the shadows.
- Longer response times: Given the vastness of many rural areas, it can often take first responders quite a while to reach an emergency call. This is especially true if the nearest station is located some distance away. In some cases, this longer response time can mean the difference between life and death.
- Challenging road conditions: Many rural roads are not well-maintained, and this can make them more challenging to navigate – even for experienced first responders. This is especially true in the winter when snow and ice can make roads treacherous.
- Lack of quality equipment: Finally, in some rural areas, first responders may not have access to the same quality of equipment as their urban counterparts. This can make it more difficult to properly do their jobs and respond to emergencies effectively.
How might an upgrade to LED lights for your emergency vehicles or response department impact these challenges, both directly and indirectly? We’ll go over several themes in our subsequent sections.
Illuminating Badly-Lit Areas
Perhaps the single most direct and meaningful way that LED lights can help first responders in rural areas is by illuminating otherwise poorly-lit areas. This can help in several ways:
- First, as we noted before, it can make it easier for first responders to find an address. In some cases, an address may be hidden in the shadows and difficult to see. With a bright LED light shining on it, however, it will be much easier to spot.
- Second, LED lights can also help first responders see potential hazards on the road ahead. This is especially important at night when visibility is limited. With a bright light shining ahead, first responders will be able to spot potential dangers such as animals or debris in the road.
- Finally, LED lights can also help first responders see in dark and difficult-to-navigate areas such as woods or back alleys. In some cases, these areas may be completely dark without a light source. With an LED light, however, first responders will be able to see where they’re going and navigate safely.
Illuminating an Emergency Scene
It’s not just the roads that lead to an emergency scene that are often poorly lit – the scene itself may be as well. This can make it more difficult for first responders to see what’s going on and take the appropriate actions. With an LED light, however, first responders will be able to see everything they need to in order to provide the best possible care.
In addition, LED lights can also be used to illuminate a specific area of an emergency scene. This can be important in a number of cases. For instance, if there’s an injured person who needs treatment, LED lights can be used to shine a bright light on the area so that first responders can see what they’re doing. In some cases, this can mean the difference between life and death.
Similarly, LED lights can also be used to illuminate a dark or dangerous area of an emergency scene. This can be important in cases where first responders need to enter a dark building or search a dimly-lit room. With an LED light, first responders will be able to see what they’re doing and stay safe.
LED lights can also be used to signal for help at an emergency scene. In some cases, first responders may need to signal for backup or for a medical helicopter. By shining an LED light into the sky, first responders will be able to get the attention of anyone who’s nearby and let them know that help is needed.
Improving Safety for First Responders
In addition to helping first responders do their jobs more effectively, LED lights can also help improve safety for first responders themselves. In some cases, first responders may be putting themselves in danger by responding to an emergency at night or in a remote area. With an LED light, however, they’ll be able to see what’s going on and stay safe.
In addition, LED lights can also help first responders stay visible to other drivers. In some cases, first responders may be driving on dark or poorly-lit roads. With an LED light, however, they’ll be much more visible to other drivers and less likely to be involved in an accident.
Traffic Diversion or Evacuation
In some emergency situations, it may be necessary to divert traffic or evacuate an area. This can be difficult to do, however, if drivers can’t see the diversion or evacuation route. With an LED light, however, first responders will be able to clearly mark the route and make sure that drivers can see it.
For example, if there’s a fire in a building, first responders may need to evacuate the area. By shining an LED light on the evacuation route, however, first responders will be able to make sure that drivers can see it and get to safety.
In addition, if there’s a car accident or some other type of incident on a highway, first responders may need to divert traffic. By shining an LED light on the diversion route, drivers will be able to see it and avoid the accident.
Sustainable and Durable
Why LED lights over other forms of lighting? For one, LED lights are much more sustainable and durable than traditional incandescent bulbs. This is important in emergency situations where lights may need to be used for long periods of time.
In addition, LED lights are also more energy-efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs. This is important because it means that first responders won’t have to worry about running out of power.
Finally, LED lights are also more durable than traditional incandescent bulbs. This is important because it means that first responders won’t have to worry about replacing the lights as often.
All these benefits are often heightened in importance for those who operate primarily in rural or remote areas. This is because in these areas, first responders may have to travel long distances to get to an emergency scene. With an LED light, however, they’ll be able to see what’s going on and stay safe.
For more on the great benefits and uses of emergency LED lights in rural areas, or to learn about any of our emergency lights or related products, speak to our team at LED Equipped today.