NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Emergency medical technician killed in single-vehicle crash while responding to structure fire - North Carolina.

Romano NT; Lutz V
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE F2002-42, 2003 Aug; :1-8
On June 13, 2002, an 18-year-old female volunteer Emergency Medical Technician (the victim) was fatally injured after being involved in a single vehicle crash while driving the fire department medic unit to a confirmed structure fire. The victim was en route to the fire on a rural State highway when the medic vehicle she was driving veered across the road, overturned, and entered a ditch. After entering the ditch, the medic unit overturned again, struck a barn, and then overturned two more times in a field. The victim was ejected and found unresponsive. She was transported to a local hospital where she was later pronounced dead. NIOSH investigators concluded that, to minimize the risk of similar occurrences, fire departments should: 1. establish, implement, and enforce Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the safe and prudent operation of emergency vehicles; 2. ensure that all persons responding in emergency apparatus are wearing and belted securely by seat belts; and, 3. ensure that drivers of fire department vehicles receive driver training at least twice a year. Although there is no direct evidence that these contributed to this fatal incident, the following recommendations are being provided as a reminder of good safety practice: 1. ensure that all equipment within the fire apparatus driver and crew compartments is properly mounted or stowed; and, 2. take into consideration the movement required by the driver to reach switches and electronic devices when developing driving compartment specifications and/or retrofitting existing apparatus.
Region-4; Fire-fighters; Emergency-responders; Fire-fighting-equipment; Motor-vehicles; Accident-prevention; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
NIOSH Division
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: March 3, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division