Canada's largest fire service deploys hybrid vehicle fleet on the front line
TORONTO, ONT-Toronto Fire Services (TFS), Canada's largest fire service, has become the first known in North America to deploy a fleet of hybrid vehicles for frontline duty. Following a competitive tender process, Toyota Canada won a contract to supply the department nine 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid intermediate SUVs. The vehicles, powered by Toyota's gasoline-electric hybrid synergy drive, have been specially modified to be used as emergency response vehicles for TFS chief officers. After testing several models, the department found that the Highlander Hybrid not only met, it surpassed the expectations of our staff, said Rob Anselmi, TFS division chief, mechanical. "We anticipate that with the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, our fleet of Chief Officer vehicles will generate 70% fewer emissions while achieving exceptional fuel efficiency. At the same time, we were impressed by the vehicle's performance and safety features," he added. Stephen Beatty, managing director of Toyota Canada, observed that "Firefighters are, quite understandably, among the most demanding vehicle owners...We view the Toronto Fire Services' choice of the Highlander Hybrid for a frontline vehicle as an important endorsement of the capabilities of Toyota's hybrid technology," he stated.