June 12, 2018
Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) is helping to reduce carbon emissions with their new fleet of hydrogen-electric vehicles. It’s the first ambulance service in the country to introduce the support vehicles to relieve pressure on official vehicles, such as ambulances. It’s set itself the challenge of making the entire fleet as environmentally friendly as possible over the next few years.
The vans don’t produce any emissions and are powered by an electric motor, using energy from the battery and a hydrogen fuel cell. The battery can be recharged at any regular electric car charger and the hydrogen can be replaced at a refueling station.
YAS is also currently working with the low emissions company ULEMCo – who specialise in helping fleets reduce their carbon footprint by converting to hydrogen-fuel vehicle hybrids – to create an ambulance prototype that is hydrogen-electric and has zero emissions.
“We’re so excited to be the first ambulance service in the country, possibly the world, to have three hydrogen vehicles in our fleet. We’re looking to expand our zero-emission fleet, as more Clean Air Zones come in across the county.”
In terms of current changes, YAS has introduced solar panels on over 100 of their ambulances which keep their batteries charged.
The Environmental and Sustainability Manager of YAS commented: “We’re so excited to be the first ambulance service in the country, possibly the world, to have three hydrogen vehicles in our fleet. We’re looking to expand our zero-emission fleet, as more Clean Air Zones come in across the county.”
Changes for the Future
YAS supported the NHS Sustainability Day at the beginning of the year, which is an annual campaign to reduce the environmental impact of the healthcare industry.
Campaign manager Scott Buckler stressed the importance of sustainability and caring about our surroundings. He said: “It’s very appropriate that the seventh annual NHS Sustainability Day should fall in the same year as the NHS turns 70. The two go hand in hand, as without sustainability, the NHS may not see its 100th birthday.”