Fla. Ambulance Overturns Responding to Call


 
 

Robert Napper | | Wednesday, December 26, 2007


BRADENTON, Fla. -- Christmas Eve became frightening and painful for two Manatee emergency workers whose ambulance overturned responding to an emergency call.

A Manatee County paramedic and EMT had to be hospitalized with injuries after the crash Monday where U.S. 41 and U.S. Business 41 merge south of U.S. 19. Their names were not released.

At 2:47 p.m., the two-person crew, a male paramedic and female EMT, had the ambulance's lights and sirens on, driving to a respiratory emergency call in Palmetto Point, according to Manatee Public Safety Capt. Larry Leinhauser. As the ambulance drove north on U.S. 41, traffic yielded to the blaring sirens. But a red pickup stopped in the road with the ambulance coming from behind. Leinhauser said the driver of the truck suddenly veered left into the path of the ambulance.

The ambulance then took evasive action to avoid a collision, hit some sand and overturned onto the grassy median.

Another ambulance arrived at the scene to provide care for the injured paramedic and EMT, while a third ambulance, of the county's fleet of 17, was dispatched to the respiratory call in Palmetto Point.

Both the paramedic and EMT suffered neck and back injuries, and were taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital. Early investigation shows the ambulance driver may have avoided a serious or fatal collision with the pickup, according to Leinhauser.

"It looks like our driver did everything right. He avoided an accident that probably would have killed the truck driver," he said. "Unfortunately, he had to pay for it."

Florida Highway Patrol troopers investigating the crash had not released the pickup driver's name at press time, or whether he would be cited in the accident. Leinhauser said county risk management officials are also investigating.

The accident slowed traffic on U.S. 41 for a short time and left one bystander worried for a colleague's well being.

"It is all part of the job, realistically," said Audie Stern, an off-duty Manatee paramedic whose family witnessed the accident from their truck. "I hope this brings awareness that people need to yield right when an emergency vehicle is coming."

In fact, drivers by law must yield right, if possible, to emergency personnel and law enforcement, Leinhauser said.

Both the paramedic and EMT were expected to be released from the hospital Monday night, to the relief of Manatee emergency officials, Leinhauser said.

He said they survived a very rare and dangerous crash.

"In my 25 years, I have not seen an ambulance overturn like this. It is a really big box, so it takes a lot to turn it over," he said.




Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Industry News, Head and Spinal Injuries, Provider Wellness and Safety, Vehicle Operations

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS





 

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Innovation & Progress

Follow in the footsteps of these inspirational leaders of EMS.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Four Killed in New Mexico Medical Plane Crash

Crash near fairgrounds claims patient and crew of three.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Texas Ambulance Involved in Crash

Odessa ambulance and car collide during response.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Las Vegas Fire, AMR Reach New Deal

Tentative agreement reached over ambulance calls.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Fire Damages Several Homes in California Earthquake

Four homes destroyed and others damaged after quake rattles Napa.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

New Mexico Air Ambulance Crash

NTSB investigates crash that killed four.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Where in the World of EMS is A.J.? Scranton

JEMS Editor-in-Chief visits his hometown of Scranton, Pa.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Over 100 Injured in California Earthquake

172 patients treated at Napa hospital after 6.0-magnitude earthquake.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


More Product Videos >