Thursday, February 7, 2013
Firefighters said they did what they were supposed to do when they parked a fire truck to a Palmer Road fire scene Monday.
“The emergency brake was on and a wheel chock was under the wheel,” said Willing Fire Chief Leroy Ives. “That’s mandatory.”
However, at around 6:10 p.m., while firefighters were responding to the
fire at Gregory Gostley’s residence, the truck rolled backwards, struck
a Willing police car that was just leaving the scene and then struck a
parked truck, causing a chain-reaction accident with two other parked
The fire truck and the other vehicles were on the right side of the road when the truck started rolling backwards, Ives said.
The Allegany County Sheriff’s Office was called to respond to the
accident. Sgt. Shawn Grusendorf said the truck had been parked for about
1.5 hours at the time of the accident. As Willing Constable Bradley
Howe was leaving the scene, the truck struck the police car’s passenger
side back quarter panel. Howe was not injured, Grusendorf said.
“He just happened to be leaving,” Grusendorf said. “The fire was pretty
much out and he was done there and pretty much heading back to whatever
else he had going on.”
The fire truck then struck a 2008 Ford truck belonging to Melissa
Deming, pushing it into a tan sport-utility vehicle, which pushed the
SUV into a black vehicle.
“The only vehicle that was occupied was the police vehicle,” Grusendorf
said. “The pickup truck was towed from the scene. Everything else was
Deming said her truck was towed to D&J Body Shop in Wellsville.
“My truck took the brunt of it. Right now, it hasn’t been decided
whether it’s been totaled,” she said. “It has a damaged front end and
Deming said she wasn’t there when the fire truck hit her truck. Her son, a firefighter, had taken her truck to the fire scene.
Ives said Willing firefighter Jim Youmans ran over to try to get into
the fire truck and prevent the accident, but was unable to do so.
Youmans said, “I tried to get in the passenger door and it picked up
speed so fast that I was afraid I was going to get hurt. I jumped out of
“We’re lucky no one got hurt,” he said of the accident.
Willing firefighters returned to Gostley’s house Tuesday because the
fire rekindled. Ives said they were called out at 5:50 a.m., remaining
on scene until around 9:15 a.m. Wellsville, Whitesville and Genesee,
Pa., firefighters also responded, he said.
“They had it knocked down probably within 10 minutes. We wanted to make sure it was out,” he said.