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Fire-fighting and water supply vehicles of standard fire-fighting brigades are mainly designed for use on roads and stable paths. The employment of such vehicles for forest and wild fire fighting in heavy and difficult terrain entails the following problems with high impact on speed and effectiveness of the operation:

  • In most cases, only lightweight vehicles can be used, as heavy fire-fighting vehicles, due to their high ground pressure, would very quickly rut the existing forest paths, thereby making it impassable.

  • Lightweight vehicles can carry only small amounts of water supply. For fighting wide area fires it is therefore necessary to install water supply lines which waste time and manpower.

  • Wheeled vehicles require a large turning radius for manoeuvering. Most forest paths are to narrow for such manoeuvres so that the vehicles employed find it very difficult or are unable to advance to the actual source
    of fire.

  • Commercial fire-fighting vehicles provide the crew only little protection against the direct effects of fire and smoke. For this reason, these vehicles have to keep at a large safety distance from the actual source of fire when combatting the fire.

  • Due to the little protection the employment of commercial fire-trucks is impossible in dangerous or contaminated areas. As a consequence emerging fires can not be extinguished directly and therefore in most cases will attain dangerous proportions.

    The JUMBO-TANK PHF 20 T is designed to cope with these problems.

    The heavy-duty fire-fighting vehicle PHF 20 T is a fully- tracked vehicle specially designed for forest fire fighting in hardly accessible and dangerous areas and for dangerous fighting tasks like fires in crashed airplanes or chemical plants. This vehicle is distinguished by an extreme large water reservoir and a remote controlled fire extinguishing monitor. The operation of this special-purpose vehicle is largely independent of external supplies and support.

    The carrier vehicle for the PHF 20 T is the chassis of the demilitarized Leopard 1 main battle tank. The fully-tracked vehicle is highly anoeuverable and mobile in cross-country terrain and features a low ground pressure in spite of high payloads. For driving on public roads the track has rubber pads mounted.

    The front end of the hull accomodates two stations fordriver and fire extinguisher operator located side by side. The construction of the hull is such as to provide good protection for the crew against direct radiated heat from the fire and mechanical forces (e. g. falling trees). The integrated NBC protection system of the Leopard 1 protects the crew against smoke and toxid gases so that it becomes possible to even cross fires. In the center of the chassis is the pump compartment with the fire extinguisher pump. The pump is powered through a hydraulic intermediate gearbox to control the pump capacity on the move (roll and pump) directly by the engine of the tank.

    The fire extinguishing agent reservoir (3-chamber system) with a capacity of appr 20.000litres is permanently mounted above the chassis. This reservoir covers the chassis almost completely. At the front, it is mounted on the existing hull frame support structure for the turret and at the rear end, it is mounted; on support pads welded onto the chassis. All connections are designed as bolted joints so that the water reservoir can be removed from the chassis formaintenance operations. The fire-fighting vehicle PHF 20 T is designed for both refilling with water from an outside source and for self-priming.

    The fire extinguishing monitor is mounted at the front of the fire extinguishing agent reservoir above the operator stations. It can be remote-controlled from the vehicle interior for reason of crew protection. It is driven lectrically. The vehicle is normally operated head-out. Only when reaching the area of the fire or dangerous zones the hatches are closed to protect the crew. Outward vision is ensured by means of optical vision blocks.

  • August 18, 2018

    Biscuit Fire - Oregon
    A media release of the first usage of the Jumbo Fire Tank.

    Houston Chronicle Demo
    Article from the Chronicle about Jumbo Fire Tank demo.

    Illinois Valley News
    Fire dragon starts to run, but danger lurks: I.V. blesses, thanks firefighters