DINKY 267 ‘EMERGENCY’ PARAMEDIC TRUCK (1979-80):
The Dinky 267 ‘Emergency’ Paramedic Truck was produced between 1979 and 1980 and was licensed from the TV Series of the same name.
The Paramedic truck had a red gloss body with a yellow interior and yellow plastic oxygen bottles. The decals were custom designed for the truck and were not the same as those on the actual vehicle in the series. They did feature the word ‘Emergency’ to acknowledge the TV series and possibly the licensing costs.
There was no number on the base plate. Also included with the truck were the shows stars, ‘Gage’ and ‘DeSoto’, as well as a large, yellow plastic ‘Emergency Squad’ badge.
PROP V ACTUAL:
The model was a good replica of the actual vehicle though the decals were not the same.
Emergency! was an American television series that combines the medical drama and action-adventure genres. It debuted on NBC on January 15, 1972 and ran until May 28, 1977, with six additional two-hour television films during the next two years.
The ‘Emergency!’ series starred Randolph Mantooth (‘John Gage’)and Kevin Tighe (Roy DeSoto’) as two specially trained firefighters, who formed Squad 51, part of the then innovative field of paramedics, who were authorised to provide initial emergency medical care to victims of accidents, fires, and other incidents in the field in order to stabilise them for transport to medical facilities.
The vehicle which represented Squad 51, a then fictional department, was constructed by Universal crews and was an accurate replica of the units built in-house. The vehicle was based on a 1972 Dodge D300 “Dualie” (two rear tires on each side, on one axle) chassis used by the LACoFD (Los Angeles County Fire Department).
The Emergency truck was custom built for the TV series because the LACoFD shops were unable to fulfil a request from Universal to build a special unit for the show within the short deadline the studio had asked for but they did provide the blueprints to Universal so the studio could build its own unit.
In both the 1978 and 79 catalogues, resin prototypes were used to illustrate the model. One variant had silver rather than yellow plastic cylinders stored at the back.
During the initial production process the decals were first omitted, then added and then modified. The decals that more closely matched the signage on the actual vehicle were produced but not used on the 267 Paramedic Truck. An assumption is that the ones used more clearly advertised the link with the TV Series. The more correct labels were later used on three Code 2 models produced by Dinky for John Gay after the factory formerly closed (see below).
A pre-production prototype. Note the side sticker which feature the decals used by the TV series model and also later on the Code 2 John Gay models. The interior is white rather than the production yellow and the air bottles are made from red plastic painted yellow.
Prototype 267 Paramedic Truck sold by Vectis auctions (c) Vectis Auctions
A prototype Forestry Fire Defence department variant of the 267 Paramedic truck. This had different decals and emergency bar lights plus the addition of two spotlights at the back borrowed from the 282 Land Rover Fire Appliance.
GIFT SETS 302 EMERGENCY SQUAD (Unissued):
Other vehicles that also featured in the TV series were a Plymouth Fury and Cadillac and Chevrolet Ambulances. Two were considered for an Emergency Gift set and the Chevrolet colour scheme was used for the 288 ambulance.
In the 1978 Trade Catalogue Dinky introduced a new gift set: Emergency Squad 302 which featured the Paramedic Truck and a Plymouth Fire Chief Car, a re-liveried 244 Plymouth Police Car. However this gift set was never released.
The second version of the 302 gift set was also never released. It featured, however, in the 1979 trade catalogue alongside individual models of the Paramedic Truck and the Superior Cadillac Ambulance, now with a white and yellow livery, which now replaced the red and white version
The Superior Cadillac Ambulance that was produced for the catalogues looked very much like a factory sample and utilised decals from available current models. The metal prototype Paramedic truck had a white interior and used a different decals to the released version.
The Paramedic truck was still licensed from the TV rights owners but both the Ambulance and the Fire Chief car were not badged with ‘Emergency’ or ’51’ decals probably to save money.
The 267 Paramedic truck made it into both the 1978 and 1979 catalogues. The gift set 302 featuring this model changed its partner vehicle between the 1978 trade and its sister consumer catalogue’s release. In the end this gift set was never commercially released
Dinky 1978 UK consumer catalogue
JOHN GAY MODELS LA COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT AND RESCUE SQUAD:
John Gay was a specialist model dealer in Kent who purchased several hundred unfinished models and left-over decals. These models were then re-liveried with various logos and sold. Three of these are relevant to the Emergency TV Series as they featured the ’51’ station number and were newly badged models of the Dinky 385 Convoy Truck and the 410 and the 412 Bedford vans.
In reality none of these vehicles had any involvement in the TV series. Both the 410 and 412 Bedford vans were completely finished in the Binns Road factory.
The Dinky 410 Bedford Van John Gay variant was available in two versions. The plain black wheeled type had an additional rear sticker on the back doors and a slightly lighter blue interior.
The original 410 ‘Royal Mail’ version had a black or unpainted silver base so it’s possible that the John Gay versions may also have had black bases.
There were two box types for the 410. The tall base bubble box and a bespoke John Gay box.
DINKY 412 Bedford Van
The Dinky 412 Bedford Van was also released with black and silver wheel types so may also have had two L.A. John Gay versions.