Driving during a hurricane is never advisable, but sometimes it can’t be helped.
Take emergency services, for instance. Their job is to get to people who can’t get out of harm’s way, but when faced with widespread flooding and a compromised infrastructure, they have to deal with the same vehicular limitations as anyone else.
Overcoming these was the goal of the almost too aptly-named Phibian from Gibbs Amphitrucks. With a unique wheel retraction system, the 30-foot long amphibious vehicle can transform from off-road capable truck to boat in less than 10 seconds, giving it true go-anywhere capability.
Powered by a 500 hp turbodiesel engine, the 4,500 pound Phibian can travel at highway speeds on land and can hit 25 knots in boat mode through the use of a water-jet propulsion system, similar to personal watercraft.
Although it only exists as a prototype at this stage, the company says there has been considerable interest from first-responders and law enforcement agencies, not only in the Phibian, but also the Quadski amphibious four-wheel ATV recently introduced by its Gibbs Sports Amphibians division.
One if by land, two if by sea, or just one for both?