For many years, rescue sleigh have not had any significant improvement. Companies knowing that the return on investment would probably not being worthwhile don't work on that sort of rescue equipment. This is why the rescuers of La Chamoniarde took up the challenge.
This is how was born the rescue sleigh "FRANCO GARDA" who was named after a great rescuer from Val d'Aosta who died in mountain.
In partnership with the Alpine rescue service of Val d'Aosta and TSL, a company based in Haute-Savoie, leader in the making of snowshoes; the first research started five years ago.
A European subvention within the INTERREG 3 program financed the project up to the prototype. The Valdotan rescue services and La Chamoniarde had to advance the money before getting the subvention.
This rescue sleigh can be used on various terrains, it is solid, light and reliable. It can be ready for use very quickly in opening out its three parts. For walking rescue team, it can be carried in three light parts up to the rescue place (very clever the maximum weight per person is 4 kg). The assembly is very easy with its articulated system in which no parts can be lost.
The rigidity associated with an efficient strapping allows the evacuation of the casualty with medical equipment in all different rescue situations, and provides a good thermal protection. The immobilization can vary according to the seriousness of the wounds.
Solid and light accessories fixed on the main module allow :
Winching in faces, winching up from an helicopter with an efficient system to avoid spinning, carrying on trails, transport with an adaptable wheel, sliding on any kind of snow or other terrain, evacuation in water with a specific protection bag for the casualty, carrying with stretcher.
French and Valdosta doctors and rescuers have tested the sleigh for a long time. It has been also tested at ENSA in Chamonix (homologated centre for the test of mountain equipment). It has just come through very severe tests in order to be homologated for the state services.
Presented in October 2005 to the rescuers worldwide congress (CISA-IKAR), the sleigh interests many countries for mountain rescue but also for other rescue operations (sea rescue - fire department - building rescue).
TSL is commercialising the product and taking care of the after-sale service for the sleigh.