We take safety very seriously and safety is the foundation of every design decision we make. The base F-550 truck comes standard with three-point belts for all passengers, front and side airbags, anti-lock brakes, traction control, trailer brake controller and trailer sway control. Cab occupants are well protected from frontal impacts by the massive steel front bull-bar, and unlike van based RVs and cab-over trucks, the F-550 places a massive diesel engine and long crumple zone forward of vehicle passengers.
With a total wet weight (full fuel and full water) of around 16,000 pounds and a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 19,500 pounds, XV-LTs are well under Ford’s GVWR. Gigantic four wheel disk brakes provide serious stopping power and shift on the fly four wheel drive provides additional traction when the weather turns bad and the roads get slick.
With a high commanding view, extendable fold away mirrors and integrated backup camera you will always be aware of what other vehicles around you are doing, and a quick blast of the air horn is sure to get the attention of any inattentive drivers.
You can count on low mounted fog lights to illuminate the road in inclement weather and super bright high intensity discharge (HID) driving lights to guide you when the sun goes down. High mounted, bright and ultra reliable LED rear brake lights and turn signals alert everyone behind you when you are stopping or turning and have the added benefit of being visible when you are pulling a trailer providing an additional level of safety if your trailer lights fail.
No Volatile Propane or Gasoline
Many RVs use highly volatile and potentially explosive gasoline and propane as primary fuels. EarthRoamer XV-LTs use low volatility and extremely safe diesel fuel as its only combustible fuel which dramatically increases the safety of our vehicles. Most RVs use propane fuel for cooking, heating and refrigeration. Propane is highly volatile and heavier than air. If a propane leak develops in an RV, the propane gas will accumulate at the lowest point where it can be ignited by an open flame or spark. By using low volatility diesel fuel to power the cook top, air heater and hot water heater in EarthRoamer XV-LTs, this risk is completely eliminated.
Common Causes of RV Fires Addressed
In addition, many RV fires are caused when one tire of a “dually” goes flat, the flat goes unnoticed by the driver and a fire ignited from the friction. This is one of the reasons we chose to use single rear wheels on EarthRoamer XV-LTs. Electrical problems are another common cause of RV fires. We only use high quality, fine strand marine wiring, weatherproof connectors, sealed AGM batteries and marine quality switches, fuses and breaker panels in the construction of EarthRoamer XV-LTs.
In an article by Rex Vogel titled “RV Fire Safety” dated April 6, 2011, the author states:
“Unfortunately, RV fires are one of the largest causes of RV loss in America today. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fire departments, RV repair shops, and insurance carriers estimate there are approximately 6,300 RV fires annually. Deaths resulting from RV fires are estimated at 5 to 20 each year and RV Alliance America statistics show half of fires erupt while the RV is parked.”
The author goes on to say that:
“Flammable-combustible gases and liquids are the cause of origin roughly 70 percent of the time…tires and brakes are the culprit in almost 20 percent of fires. Some of the worst fires are those caused when one tire of a dual or tandem pair goes flat and then scuffs and ignites, long before the driver feels any change in handling”
For a graphic depiction of the serious nature of this problem, a quick Google Image Search for RV fire turned up hundreds of photos of burning RVs and likewise a YouTube Search for RV Fire turned up hundreds of videos of burning RVs.
What Happens if you Crash in an RV?
If you’ve ever come across an RV accident, you already know the unfortunate answer to this question. All too often the end result of an RV crash is an unidentifiable pile of wood and scrap alongside the road. Once again, a simple Google Image search for Motorhome Crash or RV Crash turns up hundreds of pictures of barely discernible piles of wreckage that were once RVs.
What Happened When an EarthRoamer XV-LT Rolled?
Our super strong, one-piece molded sandwich construction composite camper body is another major safety feature that sets EarthRoamer XV-LTs apart from other expedition vehicles and typical RVs. Obviously crash testing an EarthRoamer is prohibitively expensive, but a drunken “friend” of a former EarthRoamer owner did the dubious honor of crash testing an EarthRoamer for us. According to the police report (and evidenced by the liquor bottles found in the camper), the highly inebriated driver headed off for a joy ride. He first drove off the left side of the road at a high rate of speed, turned back onto the roadway and then ran off the right side of the road and over an embankment rolling the vehicle on its passenger side. Fortunately, the drunk driver only sustained minimal injuries and didn’t hurt anyone else.
This is what actually happened when a 16,000 pound EarthRoamer rolled on its side. Yes, the vehicle sustained serious damage and the insurance company ultimately decided to total the vehicle, but the gentleman who bought it at the insurance auction drove it from Colorado to New Jersey after performing only minimal repairs.
If the unthinkable happens and you are involved in a crash what vehicle would you trust to protect you and your family; a traditional RV or an EarthRoamer XV-LT? …and please, don’t drive drunk!