SOUTH HILL, Va. (WRIC) — Two South Hill Volunteer Fire Department Vehicles were struck by a passing motorist while crews responded to the scene of a crash on Interstate 85.
According to a post of the department’s Facebook page, crews responded to a two-vehicle crash in the Northbound lanes of I-85 at 6:13 a.m. on Monday, May 15. The responding company parked a fire engine and command truck in the left lane of the road to protect crews from oncoming traffic.
About 20 minutes after crews arrived on scene, at 6:34 a.m., a passing sedan with two people inside hit the command truck and kept going towards the first responders before crashing into the fire engine.
The first responders, none of whom were hit by the sedan, then split up to handle the two crashes. More crews were called to the scene and all traffic was shut down in the area.
The driver of the car the struck the fire department vehicles was trapped and was extricated from the car by the first responders. A total of seven people needed to be hospitalized, all of whom were taken to VCU Community Memorial Hospital in in South Hill.
“As first responders, we respond to numerous emergencies each and everyday with the mission and dedication to provide quality service to the victims and ensure we ALL make it home safely at the end of each and every incident,” said Fire Chief Michael Vaughn. “I can’t stress enough the importance of slowing down and moving over when you see emergency vehicles operating on scene.”
Virginia State Police is investigating this incident.