Monterey Park Fire Chief Jim Birrell said that he had never seen an accident the magnitude of Wednesday’s crash that left 15 people hurt when two fire trucks plowed into a restaurant.
“Ninety-nine percent of the time … we don’t have anything like this occur,” said Birrell.
Six firefighters suffered minor to moderate injuries, and eight other people had minor injuries. One person was in critical condition. A total of 15 people were hurt.
The crash occurred when a fire truck and a fire engine crashed while responding to a house on fire. Both trucks were blaring sirens and running lights, one truck from Montery Park Fire Department and the other from the Alhambra Fire Department. All firefighters on board were wearing ear protecting headsets to dampen the sirens noise.
Lu’s Dumpling House owner Vivian Lu said a man was on the sidewalk when the 40,000-pound fire engine jumped the curb, pushing him as it slammed through her restaurant near Garfield and Emerson avenues about 3:25 p.m.
When the fire truck came to a stop, a man was found pinned beneath it.
Cellphone video captured the moment when a firefighter attempted to help the man under the front bumper of the engine. The victim was believed to be hospitalized in critical condition.
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