LONG SAULT – An almost brand new South Stormont pumper tanker fire truck has “extensive” damage after a rollover on New Year’s Day.
Township Fire Chief Gilles Crepeau told Cornwall Newswatch the truck was returning from a call on Northfield Road Tuesday (Jan. 1) around 5 a.m. when the truck slid into the ditch and rolled.
The region was being hit with freezing rain at the time.
Two firefighters were on the truck but were not hurt as the 35 ton machine slid out of control in an S-curve.
“Road conditions were a huge factor. Fortunately, the occupants of the fire truck were not injured. A few bumps and bruises but very lucky,” Crepeau said. “They weren’t going very fast. I’m guessing the water shifted (in the truck’s tank) and it slowly went into the ditch and rolled over.”
“(There’s) extensive damage to the truck. We’re still getting it assessed but the truck is out of service until further notice.”
The crash is reminiscent of a case in February 2016. A South Glengarry firefighter was badly injured when a fire truck rolled over on Highway 401 while responding to a single vehicle crash during extremely poor road conditions.
Crepeau says they are making arrangements to replace the truck, either through borrowing one from a neighbouring township or renting one for the Long Sault station.
As for fire coverage, the chief says the township is covered and every department is on standby in case of a fire.
“South Glengarry has offered to lend us a spare pumper truck which we are probably going to take advantage of until we get direction from our insurance provider,” Crepeau said.
The pumper tanker was only on the road six months.
“The biggest concern for us is nobody was hurt. It’s one of those unfortunate accidents but the most important thing is nobody got hurt.”