SEMMES, Ala. (WPMI) — Semmes Mayor Brandon Van Hook says the city hired a third party to investigate a Semmes Fire-Rescue truck crash that occurred earlier this month.
The accident happened during stormy weather, and at the time, the fire chief indicated the weather was major factor in the single-vehicle crash. But a Semmes Fire-Rescue Department source tells NBC 15 News the brakes failed on the ladder truck as a Lieutenant drove it down a hill on Schillinger Road and into a curve.
The source says after the rear wheels locked, the truck went sideways, and it rolled. One firefighter, who was a passenger, received minor injuries to his shoulder.
NBC 15 News also obtained an email Captain Charles Couey wrote warning about the brakes six days before the accident, the same day he says a brand new fire truck was delivered to the department but not put in service due to an upcoming ceremony dedicating the new engine. Couey wrote this warning to fellow fire fighters and the chief, “The ladder truck air brake is getting worse… Please be very careful while responding to calls.”
According to Redding Crash’s website, the owner, Ronnie Redding, is a retired state trooper, experienced collision investigator and re-constructionist. The mayor says he thought it was important to have someone independent review the crash and believes it adds more transparency to the investigation.