LANCASTER – Four people were injured, including a pregnant female who was ejected, when a fire utility truck collided with a car in a Lancaster intersection Tuesday afternoon, authorities said.
The injury collision happened just after 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 24, in the intersection of 10th Street West and Newgrove Street, according to Sgt. David Jennings of the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station.
Jennings said a fire utility truck with lights and sirens activated was traveling west on Newgrove Street, responding to an emergency call for a person in distress. He said the fire truck stopped at a red light at the intersection of 10th Street West while its driver was “clearing lanes.”
“Five of the six lanes of traffic stopped,” Jennings said.
A Toyota Avalon traveling southbound on 10th Street West had the green light but failed to yield to the emergency vehicle at the intersection, according to Detective Michael Politano of the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station.
“The Toyota Avalon changed lanes from the No. 2 to the No. 3 lane to pass the stopped vehicles and collided into the emergency vehicle in the intersection,” Politano stated. “The collision diverted the Toyota Avalon into a traffic signal pole.”
“The Toyota Avalon ultimately came to rest facing northbound in the southbound lanes of 10th Street West,” Politano added.
The Toyota Avalon was carrying a driver and two passengers, including a pregnant female who was sitting in the back seat, Jennings said, adding that the female appeared to be about seven or eight months pregnant.
“During the collision between the Toyota Avalon and the traffic signal pole, the pregnant female passenger was ejected from the vehicle,” Politano stated.
“According to witnesses, it looked like the car was going rather fast, but the witnesses were all stopped for the emergency vehicle and this other car did not,” Jennings said.
The pregnant female and the other two occupants in the Toyota Avalon were transported to Antelope Valley Hospital for medical treatment. The extent of their injuries was unclear. The firefighter sustained “very minor” injuries and was also transported to Antelope Valley Hospital, Jennings added.
The firefighter was the sole occupant in the fire utility truck.
Neither alcohol nor drugs appeared to be factors in the collision, according to Jennings.
“The law clearly states that when an emergency vehicle approaches, you’re supposed to move over to the right and stop,” Jennings said. “I can’t say what’s going through this person’s mind, whether he just didn’t hear or see the emergency vehicle, but it does tend to be a problem in these busy streets here in the Antelope Valley.”
Names and ages of the injured parties were not immediately released Tuesday afternoon. The incident remains under investigation.
Editor’s note: Investigators have not yet determined whether or not the occupants in the Toyota Avalon were wearing seat belts. Tuesday afternoon Sgt. Jennings said, “We’ve already inspected the seat belts. It looked they were worn, but it’s really hard to say at this point.”