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Thread: Two FDNY Rescue 1 Firefighters Injured after being Rear-Ended by Taxi

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    Two FDNY Rescue 1 Firefighters Injured after being Rear-Ended by Taxi

    Two FDNY Rescue 1 Firefighters Injured after being Rear-Ended by Taxi


    Updated: 07-20-2006 11:52:30 AM


    The elite firefighters of Rescue 1 were forced to tend to two of their own after a taxi slammed into their rig on the Upper West Side.

    Eyewitness News has learned the horrific accident occurred shortly after the Rescue 1 rig double-parked along Columbus Avenue near West 71st Street as its crew picked up dinner about 10:30 p.m. The impact threw one of the firefighters to the sidewalk and jammed the other between the cab and the fire truck, seriously injuring both men.

    The 37-year-old pinned firefighter was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was in critical condition early this morning. His 41-year-old colleague suffered two crushed legs and was taken to New York Presbyterian Hospital Weill Cornell.

    The 55-year-old cab driver and his passenger were transported to St. Luke's Hospital for minor facial injuries.

    Apparently, the two injured firefighters bought a mozzarella burger and a cheeseburger at Big Nick's Too, then crossed the street to climb into their truck while some of their colleagues were picking up meals at nearby Harry's Burritos.

    The yellow cab, traveling south on Columbus, drove straight into the fire truck without braking, as though the driver didn't see the vehicle.

    "He was standing at the rear of the truck, and the cab hit him straight on," said Rachel Sokol, 26, a Web site editor, of the firefighter who was pinned. "It was scary. Oh, my God, so scary."

    The other firefighters, who are specially trained to handle the most difficult rescues, poured out of the truck and nearby restaurants, desperate to aid their injured colleagues, witnesses said.

    Witnesses were haunted by the sound of the pinned firefighter. "He said, 'Oh, God, Oh, God,' then he just started to wail. It was a low wail," said Lourdes Quinones, a nurse who was walking her dog nearby.

    "Both of them were in here just before the crash," said Reaz Bhyiyan, 49, of Queens, a short-order cook at Big Nick's. "They come in three, four times a week. They're real nice guys. I just don't know what to think."

    A colleague said the two victims were both veteran members of the FDNY with more than 15 years on the job. Both had responded to the Sept. 11 attacks, he said. Rescue 5 from Staten Island came to cover for Rescue 1 after the crash. The Police Department's accident investigation unit was on the scene.

    Investigators say the cab may have pulled out to pass a larger vehicle and run straight into the fire truck. The cabbie has a clean driving record.

    "There was the crash. There was a firefighter pinned. He was wailing. I had to plug my ears because I've never heard such suffering," said Jamie Maslyn, 36, a landscape architect.

    At Rescue 1's firehouse at 530 W. 43rd St., grim-faced firefighters began to trickle back hours later. Asked how they were holding up, one replied, "Not good."

    Copyright 2006 WABC-TV.

    Republished with permission of WABC-TV
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=46&id=50318

    Courtesy of WABC-TV
    Firefighters John Walters and Mike Schunk

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    Injured FDNY Firefighter had Recently Helped with Rescue

    Injured FDNY Firefighter had Recently Helped with Rescue


    Updated: 07-21-2006 11:20:45 AM



    LARRY CELONA, C.J. SULLIVAN and JOHN DOYLE
    Courtesy of New York Post

    July 21, 2006 -- An elite firefighter who was badly hurt in a taxi crash helped take part in the rescue of a man who had fallen onto subway tracks just hours earlier.

    Mike Schunk, 41, was in stable condition yesterday at New York Hospital - the same hospital where the man he helped save was recuperating - after undergoing surgery on his broken right leg, officials said.

    His squad mate, John Walters, 37, was in critical condition after 12 hours of surgery at Bellevue Hospital to repair his legs, which were crushed in the Wednesday accident, officials said.

    Schunk is "doing really well. His spirits are good. He is expected to have a good recovery," said his wife, Veronica Schunk, who brought their 2-year-old daughter, Bridget, to the hospital to see her daddy for the first time since the accident.

    Mayor Bloomberg visited both firefighters yesterday.

    Schunk - a 12-year veteran who has been with Rescue 1 for four years - had responded at 5:30 p.m. when Dean Hart, 48, of Jericho, L.I., had fallen onto the tracks at 57th Street and Seventh Avenue after a seizure.

    A good Samaritan, Sonia Delgado, pulled Hart up, saving him from a train.

    Schunk then helped carry Hart on a stretcher to an ambulance and to New York Hospital.

    At 10:30 p.m., Walters and Schunk were hurt when a cab slammed into them as they walked behind their double-parked rig on Columbus Avenue at West 71st Street after stopping to pick up dinner.

    Walters was pinned between the cab and the truck, and Schunk was tossed to the ground.

    The cabby, Mohamed Ali Khamis, 45, of Manhattan, told investigators he was cut off by a car and forced to swerve into the lane where the truck was parked, sources said.

    There were no skid marks at the scene, and it appeared Khamis did not slow down.

    Khamis has a clean driving record. No summonses were issued, and police said they had no reason to believe the incident was anything but an accident.

    But that did little to comfort Schunk and Walters' fellow firefighters, some of whom watched as their squad mates were run down.

    "The cab didn't even brake! It's ridiculous how they drive in this city," said one firefighter visiting Walters at Bellevue.

    "Schunk is a firefighter's firefighter. He's third generation, and he almost gets taken out by a cabdriver. Walters and he are two good men."

    Others said Schunk is the squad's best cook, and is known for his linguini with clam sauce.

    Walters, who is married with no children, worked hard to make a good impression with his new squad mates, they said. An 11-year veteran, he had been assigned to Rescue 1 six months ago, on loan from Engine 288 in Queens.

    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=46&id=50340

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    Any update on their conditions?

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    Fireman heals, pal still critical

    Fireman heals, pal still critical


    One of the elite firefighters injured when a taxi rammed an FDNY truck on the upper West Side could be released from the hospital within days - but his more seriously injured comrade remained in critical condition yesterday.
    Manhattan Rescue 1 firefighters John Walters, 37, and Mike Schunk, 41, were both hit by the out-of-control cab at 10:30 p.m. Wednesday on Columbus Ave. near W. 71st St.

    Schunk, a married father of a 2-year-old girl, broke his right tibia, requiring a rod to be placed in his leg. He could be released from New York Presbyterian Hospital Weill Cornell by early next week, officials said.

    But Walters' recovery was less predictable.

    "It's going to be a long time," a fire official said at Bellevue Hospital, where Walters remained in critical condition.

    Walters, who lives in Port Washington, L.I., with his wife, was pinned between the cab and the double-parked fire truck. His legs were crushed.

    Asked when Walters could return to his firehouse, the fire official, who asked not to be identified, said he was not certain.

    "Maybe never," he said. "We don't know."

    Schunk and Walters were on their dinner break when the cabbie hit the fire truck. The taxi driver, Mohammed Ali Khamis, 45, was not charged with a crime. State records show he has a clean driving record.

    Dorian Block and Robert F. Moore



    Originally published on July 22, 2006

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    Ny post reports that FF Walters leg was amputated,,,,,

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