Q'Straint is displaying its new QRT-360, the first wheechair retractor tie-down system for school buses, at the National Mobility Equipment Dealer's Association Conference (NMEDA) this week.
The company is calling the product "revolutionary" as it meets the Rehabilitation Engineering Assistive Technology Society of North America's (RESNA) higher-strength requirements of WC18 standards for effective WTORS before they take effect in December 2015. Q'Straint explained in a statement that WC18 compliance will require wheelchair tie-down and occupant restraint systems (WTORS) to be stronger and capable of withstanding loads up to 60 percent higher.
QRT-360 is touted as the first four-point, heavy-duty and fully automatic retractable tie-down system designed, engineered and built to perform successfully in a 30-mph frontal crash with a crash test wheelchair featuring an integrated lap belt, such as with the WC19 chairs. WC19 is an additional RESNA testing standard that places the occupant's lap belt onto the wheelchair frame itself and transfers a majority of crash force onto the wheelchair tie-downs rather than on the passenger.
QRT-360 is part of the QRT-3 Series and is compatible with most vehicles and chairs for every transportation application in addition to school buses.
"In light of the (Veteran Administration's) decision to specify the use of only WC19 wheelchairs, wheelchair OEMs are focusing on these types of chairs for use with their products. As WC19 wheelchairs become increasingly more popular, the need for compatible wheelchair tie-downs becomes more critical," said Bob Joseph, Q'Straint VP of business development. "We are innovators and proud of our QRT-360 retractor as well as our QLK150 product. Both are WC18 and WC19 compliant, specifically designed and built for today's wheelchairs and tomorrow's standards, well ahead of the deadline."
The QRT-360 design utilizes innovative energy management designs and material technologies to deliver the system's full strength for maximum load capacity. It features an energy-absorbing steel frame, new high-strength 58-mm wide webbing, and a fine-adjustment self-tensioning mechanism using 25 high-strength teeth in the retractor locking mechanism. The geometry of the teeth and an innovative new locking bar ensure perpendicular alignment for maximum strength in all tie-down situations. A re-engineered positive-locking interface in the retractor mechanism contributes to the system's ability to resist extremely high dynamic loads.
The QRT-360 is covered by a comprehensive five-year warranty.