The next time you’re out for a stroll in the Arabian Desert and get bitten by a venomous viper or stung by a poisonous scorpion, there may just be a different kind of emergency vehicle racing over the next dune to your rescue. This novel mode of transport is pulled by a camel so that – whoa there! Backpedal a second! Pulled by a camel? Surely that’s not going to be quick enough to save your sorry derriere if you’ve been had by one of the desert’s nastiest! Maybe not. But let’s give this new concept by design student Frederic Schwab a chance. It deserves that much just for looking so camel-tastically cool.
Form and function all under one hoof
This trailer concept is a functioning ambulance aimed at enabling medical attention to reach those in need of help in desert environments. The main lightweight compartment known as the Baja is designed to seat the doctor, while the frame structure called the Seji can act as a single-seater for the patient and doubles as an equipment carrier too.
There’s also some nice technology for the gizmo-happy. When the call is made to the doctor on his mobile phone, the phone plugs into a GPS system built into the Baja, which then tracks the patient’s precise location. There’s even a camel-guide system that pulls on the reigns to steer the dromedary in the right direction, allowing the doc to get to the person in need and deal out first aid with no fuss.
The straw of criticism that broke the camel’s back?
But is this design concept going to cut it in the real world of harsh desert conditions? Well, it’s not going to be the quickest in a crisis – even if camels are raced like horses – but in fairness it isn’t meant to be a substitute for flying doctors, who will still need to be on call for people in remote locations or with serious injuries.
However, if your life isn’t fast ebbing away while you’re stuck out in the wild, you may be glad an eco-friendly alternative with the whole zero-emissions thing going on is powering its way towards you.
Observers might point to potential design flaws such as wheels that look like they may have a problem with traction in sand; or that all this is presuming the doc will know how to handle a camel.
But armchair critics who get the hump (sorry) about the camel caravan’s “design language” not being in tune with its environment clearly aren’t allowing for the possibility that camels dig the aesthetics of X-wing fighters.