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9 Calif. firefighters injured in fire truck collision

Despite being injured, the Mill Creek hotshots assisted after the crash, providing medical attention to crew members and civilians

By Mona Darwish
San Bernardino County Sun, Calif.

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — Nine U.S Forest Service firefighters were released from the hospital Monday, following a weekend crash on Highway 38 in the San Bernardino Mountains involving a San Bernardino National Forest truck they were riding in, officials said. The collision killed the driver of a vehicle that collided with the fire truck.

The crash occurred Saturday, March 9 around 12:35 p.m. on Highway 38, south of Valley of the Falls Drive in Mountain Home Village.

A 38-year-old Riverside man, later identified by coroner officials as Douglas Grant Jr ., was driving northbound in a 2022 Chevrolet faster than 45 mph and attempted to overtake a Toyota pickup driver ahead of him by crossing over broken yellow lines and into the southbound lane, the California Highway Patrol said. News video from the scene indicated the Chevrolet was a utility-type truck.

While in the opposite lane of traffic, Grant Jr .'s vehicle struck a 2013 International 4400 fire truck crew carrier, also known as a Forest Service crew buggy, traveling at about 55 mph, causing the fire truck driver to lose control, cross into the opposite lane and overturn after colliding with the Toyota.

Despite being injured, the hotshot firefighters remained on-scene and assisted after the crash, providing medical attention to crew members and civilians, officials said. The crew was returning to the Mill Creek Fire Station after working on a project site in the Front County Ranger District of the forest, the San Bernardino National Forest said.

“The quick actions taken by the crew members of the Mill Creek Hotshots helped reduce the severity of existing injuries and prevent further loss of life,” Front County District Ranger Mike Nobles said in a statement.

Grant Jr . died from his injuries at the scene. Additional information on the Toyota driver and whether they sustained any injuries was unavailable.


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