2 firefighters killed, 3 injured trying to reach fatal wreck

Posted at 6:05 PM, Mar 25, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-25 18:14:13-04

PRATT, W.Va. (AP) - Two West Virginia firefighters were killed and three others were injured when a volunteer fire department's truck flipped while responding to a call about a highway accident that also had three fatalities, authorities said Saturday night.

Members of the Pratt Volunteer Fire Department were on their way to the wreck on the West Virginia Turnpike when their truck flipped, Kanawha County Manager Jennifer Herrald said in an email Saturday night. She said five firefighters were aboard. Two were confirmed killed and three were injured.

Meanwhile, local media reported that it began around 7 p.m. when three people were killed in the accident the firefighters had been attempting to reach. News organizations said that accident happened after a vehicle heading the wrong way collided head-on with another.

County Commission President Kent Carper told news reporters the fire truck flipped and hit a rock wall near Paint Creek.

Survivors were being treated at Charleston Area Medical Center's CAMC General Hospital. The names of the victims and survivors were not immediately released.

Carper said in a written statement, "Our thoughts and prayers are with all those involved in these accidents this evening and their families. This is a tragic event and believed to be the worst accident involving our volunteer fire service has ever suffered."

Traffic was backed up on the turnpike while authorities dealt with the crashes.