THE world's most advanced bushfire vehicle - designed and manufactured in Bendigo - is bound for South Australian forests. Yesterday, the first of 15 FireKings produced at the city's ADI plant, were officially handed over to ForestrySA.
The FireKing - based on the Bushmaster, is the world's only firefighting vehicle with a scientifically tested crew survival cabin.
It is designed to save lives in unpredictable conditions, with a cabin highly resistant to heat, flame and toxic fumes.
ADI land, engineering and vehicles director Bob Simpson said the FireKing was equipped with world-class firefighting equipment and safety features. "The FireKing is specifically designed to have a safety cell, so in the unfortunate event of a fire, crews can remain safe in the vehicle," he said.
Mr Simpson said the sale of the FireKing was a real boost for ADI, and had potential to make it on the global market. "Every time we have a successful sale, it comes to the attention of many countries in the world and gives Bendigo great exposure," he said.
ForestrySA chief executive Ian Millard said the vehicle handover followed a three year planning process.
"We called for expressions of interest around the country to ensure we had very good crew protection and a vehicle that would stand the test of time," he said.