Volunteer firefighter Timothy P. Jansen, 45, was struck and killed Sunday night by a fire truck as the crew arrived at the scene of a house fire. Jansen was with the Santa Fe Volunteer Fire Protection District in Bartelso (IL).
Jansen was on the first pumper truck to arrive at a burning residence, said Jeff Kampwerth, chief of the neighboring Germantown Fire Protection District.
He had just gotten off the truck, to take off the hoses, when he was hit. Jansen was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead in the emergency room.
His injuries were to the chest, abdomen and pelvic area, said Phillip Moss, the Clinton County coroner.
“He had gotten off the truck and he slipped or possibly tripped over the hose, and the driver was unaware of him and the truck was backing up,” Moss said.
One of his co-workers at the scene called for an ambulance. “His fellow firefighters were there by his side until the ambulance arrived,” Moss said.
About 30 firefighters from two districts went to the home on River Road to fight the fire. When the call first came out, Jansen went to the firehouse and got his gear, then jumped on the fire truck for a ride to the scene.
The building on fire was a clubhouse, similar to a cottage used primarily as a weekend getaway, Moss said. No one was inside at the time, Kampwerth said. The building was destroyed by flames, and the Illinois state fire marshal’s office is investigating the cause of the fire. No other injuries were reported.
After Jansen’s death, a critical-incident stress debriefing team from a local hospital came to the local firehouse and talked with the firefighters and their wives, Kampwerth said.
Jansen was married and had two daughters, in eighth and first grades. He was a 15-year veteran of the district. He owned and operated MacJenna’s, a restaurant across the street from the firehouse. He named the restaurant after his daughters, said Jansen’s youngest brother, Joe Jansen.
The Clinton County sheriff’s office is investigating his death.
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