LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – One person was killed and two Louisville Metro EMS workers were seriously injured in a crash involving an ambulance.
The crash became the worst case scenario for emergency crews who were trying to get to one life or death situation only to become a part of another one. "When someone else in the other vehicle is hurt or killed," said EMS Chief of Staff Kristen Miller, "That's a heavy mantle to carry."
According to Louisville Metro police, at 6:27 p.m. Monday the ambulance was traveling with lights and sirens eastbound on River Road, on a medical run of a report of a man down, when the ambulance crashed into a blue Geo Metro turning right onto River Road from Frankfort Avenue.
The ambulance then lost control and slammed into a construction crane near the scene with the two EMS workers trapped in the cab. A piece of construction equipment was actually used to extricate the EMS workers from the ambulance, a process that took over 30 minutes.
After firefighters got the paramedics out of the mangled ambulance they were rushed to University Hospital. The driver of the Geo Metro was pronounced dead at the scene.
Ironically, and sadly, the emergency call of a man down that the crew was rushing to turned out not to be an emergency at all. Miller said, "From my understanding the accident happened about 6:24 and the call was canceled about a minute later."
The emergency call was no longer needed.
The LMPD Traffic Unit is investigating the accident but officers said it is too early to tell which vehicle was at fault. Police have not released the names of the crash victims.
Miller said the aftermath of the crash illustrated the dangers associated with EMS workers jobs. "The vehicles (ambulances) are traveling at a high rate of speed, but they are trained for that type of vehicle operation," Miller explained, "they are trained to be evasive when necessary and we ask for the public's help in listening for sirens, looking for lights and being aware of how fast moving those vehicles are."
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