If other factors are the same, the probability of a visibility-related accident for a red or red/white pumper is greater than the probability for a lime-green/yellow pumper. Lime-green/yellow fire pumpers are significantly statistically safer than all red and red/white fire pumpers. These were the findings of researchers Stephen S. Solomon and James G. King during research in the 1970s and 1980s. Solomon is a practicing optometrist and consultant on color and safety. King is an electrical engineer who holds patents for electronic circuits that carry out numeric algorithms. Both have long-term experience as volunteer firefighters.
For this study, Solomon and King analyzed data from the Dallas Fire Department, the Dallas Department of Transportation, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Because of this study, Texas Township began painting their vehicles the lime-green/yellow color in the late 1970s.
Many other departments around the country, including Detroit and Kalamazoo, also painted their trucks this color. Many departments moved back to red colored vehicles when the science of reflective stripes improved so that a small amount of stripes on the vehicle provided enough visibility to meet national standards. Texas Township has elected to retain the lime-green/yellow vehicles because of the amount of incidents we respond to on higher speed roadways such as West Q Avenue and Interstate 94. We feel this provides our emergency responders and area drivers a safer environment.
See this article for more information on the study.