COARSEGOLD — A firefighter suffered injuries to his neck, shoulder and ribs on Monday evening while at the scene of a motor vehicle accident in Coarsegold.
Just after 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 7, the firefighter responded to a call of an overturned vehicle just south of Serpa Canyon on Highway 41.
The 12-year-old driver of a Toyota that rolled off the roadway and overturned, reportedly provided information that someone else was in the vehicle at the time of the crash. This turned out not to be true, but the firefighter went in search of another possible victim.
He lost footing in the rocky terrain and darkness, and fell some 12 feet onto the rocks lining the channel of a culvert that runs under Highway 41. He was able to extract himself from the point of his fall, and was transported by ground ambulance to Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno with back and shoulder pain, according to Cal Fire. He spent the night in the hospital, and was released the following day, having suffered non-life-threatening injuries. There is no estimated time for him to be able to return to duty.
We are not releasing the firefighter’s identity, as he doesn’t want the story of this wreck to be about him, but does want to thank all those who stopped in to see him and wish him well.
“Every call, no matter how small, can put life and safety at risk,” says Karen Guillemin-Kanawyer, Cal Fire Prevention Specialist. “These first responders put themselves in jeopardy every time they start their vehicles.”