Life Expectancy of a Emergency Stretcher: When to Consider Replacement or Maintenance?


The quality and condition of a stretcher, as an important first aid and transfer tool, has a direct impact on the safety and comfort of the sick and injured, as well as on the efficiency of rescue operations. However, a stretcher is not a product that can be used indefinitely, and its lifespan is affected by a number of factors.


emergency stretcher


How long should a emergency stretcher be used? And when is the best time to replace or maintain them? We will explore this in depth.


1. Material of Manufacture


The service life of the stretcher is closely related to its manufacturing materials, metal frame stretcher is relatively durable, such as aluminium alloy or stainless steel made of stretcher, if properly maintained, usually can be used for more than ten years. The bed part made of canvas or plastic, although easy to clean and disinfect, but due to frequent contact, friction and the erosion of disinfectant, its service life is relatively short, usually after 3-5 years may need to be replaced.


2. Environment and Frequency of Use


Stretchers that are frequently used in extreme weather conditions will have their material ageing speeded up, especially if they are exposed to the sun, rain or eroded by chemicals outdoors. In places of intensive use such as hospital emergency rooms and ambulances, the wear and tear on the stretcher is even higher and regular inspection and maintenance is especially important.


3. Stretcher Safety


Regardless of its original service life, once structural damage is detected, such as broken frames, loose connections, torn or perforated bed surfaces, the stretcher should be removed from service and replaced or repaired.

At the same time, any damage to the safety restraint system on the stretcher, such as straps, should also be replaced promptly.


4. Regular Maintenance


To ensure that the stretcher is always in good and safe working condition, apart from paying attention to its natural aging, a sound equipment management system should be established, including regular equipment inspection, cleaning, disinfection and maintenance. Generally speaking, it is recommended that a comprehensive inspection be carried out at least once a year and repairs or replacements be carried out in due course according to the actual situation.


In general, there is no fixed time limit for the service life of first-aid stretchers. Instead, a comprehensive assessment needs to be made based on the quality of their materials, the environment in which they are used, the frequency of their use as well as their current safety performance. Only by doing a good job of routine maintenance and timely replacement can we ensure that the stretcher plays its due role in critical moments and protects lives.

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