KANAWHA COUNTY — A Bone County Ambulance Authority (BCAA) ambulance was involved in an accident in Kanawha County on May 15 with minor injuries reported from two BCAA employees and one driver from another vehicle.
According to BCAA officials, the ambulance was leaving CAMC Memorial and received a call to respond in Boone County. That is when, police say, the ambulance ran a red light at 50th Street with its lights and siren running and struck another vehicle at the intersection before hitting the Kanawha City Fire Station, where several firefighters inside escaped injury. The firefighters responded to the accident and assisted with other first responders.
Damage to an adjacent used car lot on the corner of 50th Street and McCorkle Avenue was noted by police.
BCAA Director Bryan Justice said on May 16 that the ultimate cause of the accident is still being investigated.
“When you respond to a call with lights and siren, people that see you responding think you are flying but when you arrive at a scene they may want to know what took you so long,” he said. “The truck involved in the accident was our COVID-19 response vehicle.”
Justice added that the ambulance had taken a patient from Boone Memorial to CAMC Memorial.
“As they were leaving (CAMC) Memorial there was a call for a positive COVID-19 patient in Boone County and they were traveling east toward Marmet when the accident happened. It was an accident and there is an ongoing investigation and I can’t comment further on it right now. It was an intersection accident, we struck a vehicle that pulled out from the intersection and crossed the median before striking the fire station. We just hope folks understand that we can’t comment further at this time as it is under investigation.”
Justice added, “I do not believe that it was a medical issue with one of our personnel.”
Justice said he was thankful that there were no serious injuries in the accident and his agency is cooperating completely with the investigation.
“Unfortunately, accidents happen and that doesn’t exclude our business,” he said. “We’ll learn from this as we move forward.”
The BCAA director said that, with his COVID-19 equipped vehicle out of commission, the agency will act quickly.
“We are early into this right now and get the investigation wrapped up and look at how we are going to do that,” he said. “Any time an ambulance is in an accident like that we have to replace all of the equipment in it like the cardiac monitor, the cot and not to mention the gear we had on there that made it our COVID-19 response truck.”
Those involved in the accident were treated for minor injuries.