Eastgate firefighter injured in rollover accident
Eastgate Fire Chief, Ken Mergenthaler, says a volunteer firefighter has been treated and released from a Great Falls hospital after a water tanker rolled several times while fighting a fire north of Great Falls around seven this morning.
He says the firefighter has a broken rib and cuts on his face. Chief Mergenthaler says the truck was on a very steep embankment and got onto a soft edge. The injured firefighter was the only person in the truck when it rolled. He was airlifted to Benefis Hospital in Great Falls.
“It was very tough access to it, very very narrow roads, which is part of the reason the accident occurred and we knew that we'd have trouble getting an ambulance in there and at first we didn't know where he was at or how bad he was hurt so rather than take any chances, we requested Mercy flight right away to come in,” says Mergenthaler.
The accident occurred after Eastgate Volunteer Fire Department responded to a mutual aid call to put out a wildfire north of Great Falls. All of the firefighters from Lewis and Clark County are now back in the area. Firefighters in Cascade County are monitoring the 7000 acre area where the fire started after high winds snapped a power pole Tuesday afternoon. Cascade County officials say the fire is now contained.
Story by Kristin Price, Beartooth NBC.
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