Courtesy of Stevens Point Journal
A Stevens Point ambulance on its way to an emergency call slid out of control and crashed into the north wall of the city’s fire station No. 2 around 11 a.m. Tuesday morning. There is about a 40-foot hole in the station at 4401 Industrial Park Drive. The ambulance went through the garage and ended up near the station’s living quarters, said Fire Chief Mark Barnes.
The two firefighters who were in the vehicle, Dennis Zvara and Mark Kitowski, were transported to St. Michael’s Hospital with minor injuries, said Stevens Point Police Chief Jeff Morris. They were released from the hospital Tuesday afternoon. The ambulance narrowly missed a utility pole and glanced a tree before colliding with wall. The firefighters were housed at the Industrial Park station. “I’m just glad no one was seriously injured,” Barnes said. “If they would have hit that pole, it would have been a lot worse.”
The cause of the crash still under investigation, said Stevens Point Fire Chief Mark Barnes. But initial reports were show there was something wrong with the vehicle’s breaks. “It may have been a vehicle malfunction,” Barnes said. “We won’t know for a while, but it doesn’t appear speed was a factor.”
Stevens Point Mayor Gary Wescott said initial damage estimates at the station were “extensive.” “I won’t know for a few days what the extent of the damage is, but the building may be totaled,” Wescott said. “It may be more economical to demolish the station and rebuild.”
As soon as the crash was reported a second ambulance was brought on line, Barnes said. The fire department will operate out of station No. 1 for the time being, he said. There are still two ambulances to handle medical emergencies. Barnes said response times will be a little longer to the eastern part of the county.
Thornton can be reached at 345-2257 or at firstname.lastname@example.org