Patient and medic die after being ejected from ambulance during crash

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A patient and a paramedic were killed Friday night when an ambulance crashed on Interstate 40 in Nashville. 

Nyema Jackson, 36, of Jackson, Tennessee, and paramedic Zachary Pruitt, 36, of Humboldt, Tennessee were both ejected from the ambulance after it struck a rock wall, Metro police said. 

The 2016 Ford ambulance, affiliated with West Tennessee Health Care and Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, was transporting the patient to Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Police said the driver lost control in a curve, left the roadway and struck a rock wall. 

The ambulance, which was significantly damaged, came to rest back in the travel lanes of I-40 east. 

Jackson and Pruitt were taken by ambulance to Vanderbilt after receiving CPR from first responding officers. They were both pronounced dead at the hospital.

The ambulance driver told responding officers she hydroplaned in the rain.  

Police said the driver suffered non-life threatening injuries and was also taken to Vanderbilt. 

Witnesses reported the emergency equipment on the ambulance was not activated at the time of the crash.

The preliminary cause of the crash appears to be excessive speed for road and weather conditions, police reported.

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