Off-Road Rescue

Calvin College Senior Design Team 17

The Project


Our Story:

Off-Road Rescue was born after an experience Alex Meador’s mother had while hiking on Scar Face Mountain in New York. Mr. and Mrs. Meador were hiking down the trail when Alex’s mother fell and shattered her ankle 6 miles away from the trail head. Unable to continue to walk, emergency services were called to come and extract her from the trail. While a park ranger was able to arrive at her side within an hour of the accident, it took another 5 hours for a six wheeled rescue gator to arrive and take her off the mountain. In order to get to Alex’s mother, six rescue operators had to blaze a trail wide enough for the vehicle to fit which involved cutting down trees, uprooting underbrush and overall causing massive amounts of destruction to the environment. Looking at this experience, our team agreed the rescue operation took to long, caused too much destruction to the environment and required too many rescue operators to accomplish.

The Problem:

The current standard practice for off-road rescue in secluded environments such as forests and mountains is to send out a gator or ATV to the site of the injured person. The injured person in then loaded onto the back of the vehicle, or in extreme situations a sled, and pulled out of the environment to receive more advanced medical attention. This method of removing someone from a rugged environment can often cause more pain and discomfort for the victim due to the movement of the vehicle over obstacles. Also due to trail size constrains, larger vehicles tend to have a more difficult time navigating narrower trails and often require obstacles such as trees and other vegetation to be cut down to increase the width of the trail for easier passage.

Our Solution:

Off-Road Rescue is an rough terrain rescue trailer designed to decrease extraction times of wounded individuals and reduce the amount of necessary operators while leaving a minimal impact on the environment. The trailer is designed to be towed behind an ATV and provide a large degree of maneuverability around obstacles so minimal sacrifices have to be made during a rescue operation route. On board is an air ride system which allows the trailer to be lowered to ground for easier loading and unloading of wounded individuals. Off-Road Rescue is designed to encompass the engineering design norms of Trust within the end user and Caring for the individuals who are unfortunate enough to need help if they are incapacitated in a remote location.


Documents pertaining to our project can be found on the documentation page.