Madison, WI 53719
Engine Company 5 was dispatched to a motor vehicle crash near the intersection of Buckeye Road and Stoughton Road early Tuesday morning. Just prior to leaving quarters, the incident was upgraded to a pin response with reports of the driver trapped inside the vehicle. Additionally, firefighters were informed by dispatchers that the involved vehicle had just been stolen.
Upon arrival, Engine 5 found multiple vehicles involved, but the stolen vehicle suffered the most significant damage and airbags were deployed. Firefighters began stabilizing the vehicle while paramedics attempted to contact the driver inside.
Extrication operations were complicated by the extensive damage to the vehicle, which prevented firefighters from opening the driver’s side door or accessing the engine compartment to disconnect the battery power.
While circling the vehicle to assess other potential safety hazards, firefighters noted the driver was smoking a cigar and immediately instructed him to put it out due to the fire risk.
The driver then unexpectedly started the vehicle. One paramedic quickly reached inside and turned off the vehicle. He attempted to take the keys away but they were trapped in the ignition. Another firefighter restrained the driver so he would not attempt to operate the vehicle again, and the driver became physically combative toward the firefighter.
The firefighter and paramedic continued to restrain the driver and asked him to calm down as Ladder Company 8 began extrication operations, removing the passenger-side door to provide an exit point for the man. He was able to get out of the vehicle on his own and was further evaluated by paramedics before being taken into police custody.
Cynthia Schuster (Public Information Officer)