Dubai already has the tallest office building, the tallest residential building and the biggest aquarium in the world and as of this week it can add the longest ambulance to its list of records.
The world’s longest ambulance is 18 meters (59 feet) and can hold up to 44 patients at the same time, according to Khalifa bin Darri, head of the Dubai Ambulance Center (DAC).
The Dubai Ambulance Center said it intends to contact the Guinness Book of World Records to register the ambulance as the world's longest. Guinness could not be reached for confirmation, though rumors circulated in local internet forums about its immenent entry into the record book.
The blue-and white stretch-ambulance features a helicopter landing pad on its roof as well as internet and satellite facilities for the doctors. With state-of-the-art operating rooms, an intensive care unit, a radiography room and an integrated pharmacy, the ambulance is more like a mobile hospital.
"The ambulance will be a mobile hospital that immediately goes to the accident scene and rescues a large number of the injured who will get treatment inside till they are transferred to the hospital," said Darri.
The Emirati-designed ambulance is bigger than a bus and is expected to begin operations in three months, he added.
When asked about the reason for launching the world's longest ambulance, Darri said that the U.A.E. has recently witnessed a series of serious accidents, the most memorable of which was last year’s crash on Abu Dhabi road involving more than 200 cars.
"It was necessary to have an ambulance that can take as many patients as possible and offer them immediate treatment. Thus, an Emirati team designed the ambulance and sent the design to a German company to manufacture it," he explained.
"This is a huge leap in the world of ambulance services. It is not just a traditional ambulance that transfers patients to the hospital, but it offers full medical services at the scene. The patient might not even need to go to the hospital at all," said Darri, adding that it was also more time- and cost-effective than sending several small ambulances.