JAMAICA – Firefighters injured in crash
KINGSTON –– As Jamaicans spent yesterday celebrating the island’s 53rd anniversary of Independence, the families
of six firefighters prayed and kept their fingers crossed that they would survive serious injuries they sustained in two separate incidents yesterday and Monday.
Yesterday’s incident took place in Westmoreland when an ambulance transporting three firefighters, responding
to a medical emergency in the Savanna-la-Mar area, met in an accident.
“The three firefighters were travelling towards Savanna-la-Mar, and upon reaching Paradise Street they saw a Toyota Corolla speeding towards them,” acting senior deputy superintendent of the Jamaica Fire Brigade, Emilio Ebanks, told the Jamaica Observer yesterday.
Ebanks said the Corolla slammed into the front of the ambulance, despite an attempt by the firefighters to avoid the crash.
The injured firefighters and the driver of the Corolla were rushed to hospital. In the other incident on Monday, firemen had responded to a call that a house was on fire on Olympic Way in Kingston.
Ebanks said that after the firemen extinguished the blaze, they were packing up their equipment to leave when a gas cylinder at the house exploded. Three firefighters who were in the house suffered severe burns to parts of their bodies.They were taken to hospital and admitted.
“At this time, the set of incidents have left members of Jamaica Fire Brigade feeling tense; however, they remain resolute in carrying out their daily functions,” said Ebanks. Yesterday, as news of both incidents circulated, Jamaicans reacted with sympathy.
“We just want to commend the firefighters who continue to set an example and to go above and beyond to ensure the safety of Jamaicans,” said Corey Brown, a Kingston resident.
Another man, who gave his name only as Ian, said: “It really makes me feel teary-eyed to hear how these men and women continue to go all out to execute their duties.”