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Thread: Crash Kills California Firefighter

  1. #1
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jan 2002

    Crash Kills California Firefighter

    Crash Kills California Firefighter

    Reprinted with Permission, The Times-Standard

    A Hoopa, Calif. volunteer firefighter died Monday from injuries suffered when the fire truck he was driving ran off Pine Creek Road in Hoopa and smashed into a tree.

    Paul Cooper, 26, died Monday morning at Mad River Community Hospital in Arcata, Deputy Coroner Charlie Jones said.

    Cooper was pinned in the Hoopa Fire Department truck for about an hour after it ran off Pine Creek Road on Friday afternoon and struck a large oak tree. He was extricated by Willow Creek and Hoopa firefighters, the California Highway Patrol said.

    Cooper's passenger, 34-year-old Hoopa firefighter Robin Stevenson, was thrown through the windshield when the truck hit the tree. She suffered two broken ankles and other injuries and remained at Mad River Hospital on Monday afternoon.

    The two firefighters had been on their way to a car accident reported on Pine Creek Road. The CHP said it was raining at the time.

    Cooper, a Hoopa resident, had recently completed four months of firefighter training at the fire academy in Yuba City, said Rod Mendes, assistant fire management officer with Hoopa Fire Department.

    "He was very well-liked and an excellent firefighter," Mendes said. "It was such a tragic accident. It's very difficult for the community, the family and the Fire Department."

    Mendes said Cooper, one of 13 volunteers with the department, "was very dedicated" and planned to make firefighting his career.

    The accident, reported shortly before 4 p.m. Friday, is still under investigation. The CHP said Cooper was negotiating a left turn when the fire truck's right tires ran off the pavement and hit the soft, grassy shoulder of the road.

    The truck first hit a power pole, then veered across Pine Creek Road and into the big oak tree.

    The CHP said a large tractor was used to pull the mangled truck away from the tree.

  2. #2
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jan 2002
    Cooper, Paul Eugene

    Age: 26
    Rank: Firefighter
    Status: Volunteer
    Incident Date: 02/11/2000
    Incident Time: 15:50
    Death Date: 02/14/2000

    Cause of Death: Struck By/Contact with Object
    Nature of Death: Internal Trauma
    Emergency Duty: Yes
    Duty Type: Responding/Returning from Alarm
    Activity Type: Driving/Operating Vehicle/Apparatus
    Fixed Prop. Use: Street/Road

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Hoopa Volunteer Fire Department
    P.O. Box 369
    Hoopa, California 95546-0369
    Chief: Harold Jones

    Final Summary:
    Firefighter Cooper was responding as the driver of an engine apparatus enroute to a motor vehicle accident on a narrow two-lane road. While the engine was about to negotiate a slight left curve, a car approached from the other direction straddling the line between the two lanes. Firefighter Cooper moved the apparatus to the right side of the road to avoid a collision, and the engine

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