So today my partner and I where en route on a routine 911 call somewhere on White Oak. I love when we get calls in the Heights. That way I don't even have to use the map. I was driving the squad aka dog catcher as we like to call it. It has the front of a SUV and the back is all compartments that open from the outside. The compartments are filled with our various EMS gear. Everything from cardiac monitor to electric cooler for certain medications.
I had lights and sirens blaring. Inside, however, we were quietly listening to the radio traffic and some Rolling Stones on the FM radio. Slowed to an intersection and creeped through. Right before I cleared it we were struck on the passenger side, mid way back pretty hard. Luckily our vehicle has a low center of gravity and instead of flipping over we spun slightly with the impact. The other driver was in a small coupe style car. Which had its grill and bumper laying in pieces on the hot concrete. It's airbag deployed doing it's job of protecting the driver.
Byrd and I were both alright for the most part. I had some minor bruises. Byrd was complaining of his chronic back injury acting up. He has surgery on it about a year ago. I had to call the dispatcher on the radio and let them know we were involved in an accident. Then began asking if everyone was okay and if we needed a mechanic/tow truck. To which I both replied no. Within 5 minutes I had two fire trucks show up to help and shortly after two chiefs arrive. Needless to say it was a big mess and I was in the middle.
HPD brought out an official accident invistagator. Which was routine for all accidents involving a city vehicle where someone has been injured. Mostly CYA (cover your a$$). It was interesting to watch the invistagator go to work. He took several measurements of the width of the lanes in the road. I watched him for a while then got tied up in my own paperwork.
The Chief told me that I needed to go get a drug test and then I would go home for the rest of the shift. I laughed and asked if it was because I had a crazy haircut. Fortunately, it was just routine. So we cleaned up the scene. I went downtown with the Chief for a fun and exciting urinalysis test. After being in the military and now the fire department, I figured I've probably had close to 40 or more by now.
We returned to the station just in time for dinner. I had a nice warm welcome from the dozen other firefighters at my station (sarcasm). And yes cake and ice cream will be available at my station on Monday.
Morale of the story is be careful out there while driving. With text messaging all the rave and pimped out sound systems, not even bright lights and a loud annoying siren can protect you.