A speeding ambulance and a racing firetruck, both responding to emergencies in Brooklyn, wound up crashing into each other early Thursday morning in a horrific wreck that left one man dead and 10 others injured.
Police said that the ambulance was transporting 59-year-old Jamil Almansouri, who was suffering a heart attack and riding along with EMTs and his 35-year-old sister, to Woodhull Hospital when it collided with a firetruck at the corner of Myrtle and Throop Avenues at about 12:47 a.m. on Sept. 17. The FDNY unit was en route to a nearby blaze.
Almansouri died in the crash, and his sister wound up being critically injured, law enforcement sources said. Two paramedics in the ambulance were also hurt while trying to save the man.
Six firefighters received minor injuries in the crash as did one civilian in an SUV that suffered some damage in the incident.
Police say Ladder Company 102, stationed on Bedford Avenue, was racing with lights and sirens activated to a confirmed fire in an occupied building at 721 Willoughby Ave. in Bedford-Stuyvesant. The truck was traveling eastbound along Throop Avenue when it broadsided the ambulance, which also had its lights and sirens activated, as it traveled northbound on Myrtle Avenue.
The ambulance had picked up Almansouri moments earlier at his home on Throop Avenue, about 11 blocks away from the crash site.
The impact caused the ambulance to spin around, striking a pole and an SUV. The firetruck then mounted the sidewalk before stopping in a bus stop, coming within a few feet of hitting a building.
Emergency crews rushed to the scene, but could not save Almansouri, who died at Woodhull Hospital after being transported by another ambulance unit. The Medical Examiner will determine the cause of his death.
Almansouri’s sister was said to be in critical condition at Woodhull Hospital, where other family members were apparently waiting for them to arrive.
The two EMS paramedics were also injured, but officials say their injuries do not appear life-threatening. Six firefighters on the ladder truck were not seriously injured, police reported.
A civilian in the SUV received minor injuries, officials said.
The crash left EMS workers shaking their heads wondering what could’ve been done to avoid the crash.
“It didn’t help there is scaffolding on the corner blocking the view,” said one paramedic. “I don’t know what could’ve been done to avoid this.”
The last major crash between FDNY vehicles occurred on August 11, 2019 when two ambulances crashed into each other in the Bronx, resulting in one of the vehicles flipping onto its side. Four emergency medical technicians were injured in that crash.
The crash is under investigation by the NYPD Highway Crash Investigation Squad and the Fire Safety Unit of the FDNY.
As for the fire on Willoughby Avenue, where the firefighters were headed, one person wound up injured in the blaze that engulfed a top-floor apartment, sources said.