Jaguar Land Rover has just donated a specially customized vehicle to the Red Cross emergency response fleet. The bespoke Discovery model will come with a special drone and wheels that have the capability to cover any type of terrain. It will enter service as an emergency mobile command center with the Austrian Red Cross disaster response teams.
The vehicle was developed from the original Project Hero concept car and Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations worked closely for a period of 18 months with the Austrian Red Cross to customize the Discovery for the organization’s purposes.
The Discovery is specially designed and engineered and comes with the latest communications equipment, which includes an advanced eight-rotor drone. The drone has a long-range thermal imaging camera which has the capability to spot a person from 440m and can identify a vehicle at almost 1,000m. The operator just has to tap the item identified by the drone on the slide-out main computer touchscreen’s video feed to track the object and obtain precise co-ordinates. This can be crucial when directing rescue efforts.
The Discovery will be used as a mobile hub for disaster emergencies from which Red Cross experts can direct rescue operations. Other bespoke features of the vehicle include four radio antennae, 360-degree lighting and a unique integrated carbon fiber loadspace Command Center, which will serve as a center for Red Cross operatives to co-ordinate emergency responses when they reach the scene of an emergency, irrespective of the time.
The vehicle is derived from a 258PS 3.0-litre TD6 Land Rover Discovery, and makes it possible for emergency crews to reach remote disaster zones quickly in all conditions. It will also provide them with instant updates so that they can act quickly and co-ordinate emergency planning.
Commenting on the emergency vehicle, Michael van der Sande, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations, said that the company’s partnership with the Red Cross had begun back in in 1954 and extends far beyond just providing vehicles. The goal is to help the Red Cross improve its disaster response and thus help save lives. Land Rover’s engineering team worked closely with experts from the Austrian Red Cross to leverage Land Rover’s technology and talent to come up with a vehicle that can cater to the requirements of the Red Cross in the region.
Dr Jemilah Mahmood, IFRC Under Secretary General for Partnerships said: “We are grateful for Land Rover’s generous support over the past six decades. The Discovery Emergency Response Vehicle is yet another result of our strong global partnership that brings together the best expertise of the Red Cross and Land Rover in one unique vehicle, which will make a difference in rescue operations in the harshest conditions.
She said that the vehicle will be used to build resilience in communities around the world who are dealing with natural disasters like monsoons, flooding and earthquakes.
Land Rover began its relationship with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) by donating a vehicle which was used as a mobile dispensary in Dubai in 1954. The partnership has now involved donation of over 120 vehicles thus helping the organization to improve the lives of vulnerable communities across the globe.
From 2013, the partnership has also raised over USD 12.8 million for people in need, funding 18 humanitarian projects in 25 countries across four continents.
Together the two organizations have reached almost one million people globally through the provision of emergency response vehicles, help at home services in the UK, and overseas projects.
The new vehicle is the first of its kind and marks a new era in the partnership between Land Rover and the IFRC.
Manju Mathew, an MBA in marketing, completed publisher training courses from the Oxford Brookes University and New York University. She started with marketing and PR roles before moving on to her current position as a full time writer. Currently living in Dubai, her life as an expat has sharpened her observation skills and flair for writing. She enjoys writing about luxury cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc even if she can only dream of owning them.
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