3 Oklahoma Firefighters Injured in Fire Truck Crash

Posted: 05-07-2008
Updated: 05-07-2008 02:34:51 PM

Tulsa World, Okla.

Three Tulsa firefighters were hospitalized Tuesday after their firetruck crashed while on a call.

Engine 4 was traveling south on Gilcrease Museum Road just north of U.S. 412 when the accident occurred about 10:40 a.m., Fire Capt. Larry Bowles said.

The firetruck hit a guardrail, snapped a utility pole and struck a pickup parked in front of a house on the southwest corner of Gilcrease Museum Road and Easton Place. The house did not appear to be damaged.

All three firefighters in the truck were injured. Two were released from the hospital Tuesday, while a firefighter who was knocked unconscious remained at St. John Medical Center overnight, Bowles said.

Their names were not released Tuesday.

An investigation will determine the cause of the crash, but Bowles said there is "nothing to indicate" that another vehicle played a role in the crash.

Area power lines were down because of the accident, and police closed nearby streets while they investigated.

The firefighters were on their way to an accident at Third Street and Denver Avenue downtown when the crash occurred. Before that call, they had been heading back to Station 4, at 524 W. 12th St., after a false alarm at a business.

The three men were wearing their seat belts, Bowles said. They crawled from the firetruck's windows while waiting for their fellow emergency responders.

Glenda Scott was watching TV at her home on Easton Place when she heard the crash.

"It was an awful boom," Scott said. "I was shocked when I saw the truck turned over. I was just concerned about the firemen."

Bowles said, "Any time any body gets hurt, it's tragic, but when it's your own people, you are especially affected."

"We are a family," he added. "It's like having a family member involved in a car wreck."

Replacing the truck, which was about 7 years old, will cost about $400,000, Bowles said.

Even though Tulsa firefighters respond to more than 50,000 calls each year, accidents involving firetrucks are ''remarkably rare,'' Fire Capt. Larry Bowles said.