ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) – It was an accident no one expected to happen.

“It’s not too often you see a truck, especially a fire truck that massive, to flip over,” said Charlie Hand, a witness of the accident.

On Feb. 2, firefighters were responding to a structure fire when the truck completely overturned on South Harding Street, leaving all four of them with minor injuries. The driver and a lieutenant on board received head injuries.

“He could have been speeding too fast but it’s still unbelievable to see a truck flipped over like that,” Hand said.

WALB requested a copy of a Georgia State Patrol incident report that does say the driver “was traveling too fast to safely turn,” but the driver wasn’t cited. After digging into the repair history of the firetruck in question, WALB found that there was a system malfunction the day before the accident.

According to a work order on Feb. 1, 2024, the truck would “not go into pump.” A reliable source tells WALB the truck would not pump because a brake sensor was on, so someone turned off the sensor to bypass the pump issue.

A work order on Feb. 1 shows the firetruck that overturned had mechanical malfunctions.
A work order on Feb. 1 shows the firetruck that overturned had mechanical malfunctions.(walb)

The work order does not show a mechanic resolution was documented, and a service completion date was never recorded. Records also show the truck had been serviced on several other occasions.

WALB also learned the truck is a 2007 model. A reliable source also says the truck is a Frontline truck mainly used for all emergencies. According to the National Fire Protection Association standards, a fire apparatus should be put on reserve after 15 years and retired after 20.

WALB did reach out to the city and asked them several questions, including if safety protocols have changed due to the accident rollover. They said no. We also asked if the firetruck accident was discussed in a review board meeting on Thursday, March 28. They said no. However, we have been told by several sources the firemen involved gave statements to the accident review board this morning.

A reliable source also said it would take a week for them to determine if the accident was avoidable or unavoidable and if there are Disciplinary actions that need to be taken.