Ford F-550 Super Duty Concept Saves Lives After Texas Tornadoes

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A custom-built Ford truck was drafted into service after Tornadoes struck the Lone Star State.

Ford arrived at the 2012 Chicago Auto Show with a custom-built F-550 Super Duty Rescue Truck concept complete with Fire Department livery. The truck was meant for show only and the Detroit automaker paraded it around from car show to car show, eventually making its way to Texas generating interest along the way. In an ironic twist, the concept soon became a support vehicle after tornadoes ravaged the Dallas, Texas area on April 3rd.

The truck, which had never been driven more than 3 miles, was taken by NewScope Marketing VP Brad Snyder and an employee to the scene of the storms after a call from the local fire department was utilized for search and rescue and transporting civilians caught up in the natural disaster. The New York Times reported that the Super Duty Rescue Truck surveyed 124 homes that were completely or partially destroyed. It is powered by a 6.7-liter Powerstroke diesel V-8 engine, carries a 19,500-pound gross weight and features two thermal-imaging cameras, Doppler radar and a generator strong enough to power a small house, all of which can be used while the truck is in motion.

It was deployed for 10 hours and was a huge help to the local first responders. The paper said that after the truck was relieved of duty, it returned to the show and made its scheduled stops around Texas and Oklahoma. The $150,000 rated Ford F-550 Super Duty Rescue Truck will be on display this summer in Detroit at the Woodward Dream Cruise. Ford sells around 1,000 units of their F-450 and F-550 Super Duty trucks to fire departments and this latest bit of publicity and do-gooding should only help boost the profile of this incredible community-serving machine.

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