Semi Slams Into Sullivan Fire Truck, Injuring Two Firefighters
Two Sullivan firefighters were treated for minor injuries after a tractor-trailer slammed into the truck's rear after it slowed for an accident Monday afternoon, August 31, at 12:42 p.m.
According to the Missouri State Highway Patro, the accident occurred on westbound I-44 at the 220.4 mile marker. A 2016 Sullivan fire truck, 854, driven by firefighter Jacob A. Dace, was responding to a vehicle accident. The emergency lights were activated, and Dace began to slow down for the accident when it was struck in the rear by a 2020 Volvo tractor-trailer, operated by Michael S. Walton, 51, Peoria, Mo. The impact sent the Sullivan Fire apparatus off the right side of the roadway and into a 2006 Dodge truck and cargo trailer that was in the ditch. It was the vehicle reported in the initial accident.
Missouri Baptist Ambulance responded to the scene and requested additional medical personnel after observing the impact via radio back to Sullivan Police.
Dace, 27, Pacific, received minor injuries and Captain Damon S. Sumpter, 49, Sullivan, also received minor injuries. Both were transported by Missouri Baptist Ambulance to Missouri Baptist Hospital, Sullivan, where they were treated and released.
There was moderate damage to the tractor trailer, minor damage to the 2006 Dodge truck, and extensive damage to the Sullivan Fire apparatus.
Sullivan Fire Chief Eric Lewis reported Monday afternoon that the firefighters were all believed to be OK with minor injuries sustained.
"We are very lucky because this could have been really bad," said Chief Lewis. "Right now it looks like our crew is in pretty good shape, thank goodness."
Lewis stated that the fire apparatus did not fair as well and is extensively damaged.
"At this point, it looks like the entire box which sits atop the truck is tilted over to one side of the captain's seat area and twisted," said Lewis. "We have notified our insurance company and will have the estimates done of the apparatus that will determine if it's totaled or fixable."
Lewis reported that another truck has now been placed in service to replace 854 until it is repaired or replaced.
"We are just very thankful that our firefighters are safe and in good condition," concluded Chief Lewis.