An ambulance crashed with a firetruck on Thursday morning while they were both responding to emergencies in Bedford-Stuyvesant, leaving one patient dead and 10 others injured.
The ambulance was transporting a 59-year-old man suffering from a heart attack and his 35-year-old sister to Woodhull Hospital when it collided with a firetruck at the corner of Myrtle and Throop avenues at 12:45 am, police said. The FDNY unit was en route to a nearby blaze.
The heart attack patient died in the crash, and his sister was critically injured, law enforcement sources said.
Police say Ladder Company 102, stationed on Bedford Avenue, was racing with activated lights and sirens to a confirmed fire in an occupied building at 721 Willoughby Ave. in Bedford-Stuyvesant. The truck was traveling eastbound along Throop Avenue when it T-boned the ambulance traveled northbound on Myrtle Avenue, which also had its lights and sirens activated.
The impact caused the ambulance to spin around, striking a pole and an SUV. The firetruck then mounted the sidewalk before braking by a bus stop, coming within a few feet of hitting a building, authorities said.
Emergency crews rushed to the scene, but could not save the 59-year-old man who they say died at the scene. The Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death.
The 35-year-old woman riding with the patient was said to be in critical condition at Woodhull Hospital. Family members had been waiting at the hospital for the heart attack victim and his sister at the time of the crash, police said.
The two paramedics were also injured, but officials say their injuries do not appear life-threatening. Six firefighters on the ladder truck were not seriously injured, police reported.
A civilian in the SUV, which was somewhat damaged, received minor injuries, officials said.
The incident left EMS workers wondering what could’ve been done to avoid the crash.
“It didn’t help there is scaffolding on the corner blocking the view,” said one paramedic. “I don’t know what could’ve been done to avoid this.”
The last major crash between FDNY vehicles occurred on August 11, 2019, when two ambulances crashed into each other in the Bronx, flipping one of the vehicles onto its side. Four emergency medical technicians were injured in that crash.
The crash is under investigation by the NYPD Highway Crash Investigation Squad and the Fire Safety Unit of the FDNY.
As for the fire on Willoughby Avenue, where the firefighters were headed, one person wound up injured in the blaze that engulfed a top-floor apartment, sources said.
This story first appeared on AMNY.com.