Tuesday, July 22, 2014         

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Kauai Fire Department unveils high-tech driver simulator

By Star-Advertiser staff


The Kauai Fire Department unveiled its new driver simulator today at the Lihue Fire Station.

The driver simulator, housed in a 30-foot trailer, uses virtual simulation technology to train fire truck or other drivers in an environment that resembles real-life scenarios, according to a Kauai County news release. A large three-panel screen that surrounds a bucket seat, steering wheel, brake and accelerator, gives the driver the sense that he or she is operating a vehicle in almost any condition.

"It's incredible how real it feels," said Mayor Bernard Carvalho  Jr. as he simulated driving a fire truck down a busy street. "Most importantly, it gives our crews the tools they need to learn how to operate their vehicles safely in a controlled environment."

During the demonstration, Kauai Fire Chief Robert Westerman said: "Representatives from the Kaua'i Bus were here this week and used the equipment to simulate driving a bus."

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