Grisly crash leaves one man critical

Several firefighters, taxi driver hurt
January 17, 2008 7:24:23 PM PST
Several firefighters and a U.S. Postal Service driver were injured when an fire truck and a post office truck collided. A taxi cab was also involved in the accident.

Authorities say the incident happened at about 3:15 p.m. at South Conduit Avenue and 225th Street in Rosedale, Queens.

Eyewitness News reporter Nina Pineda has more.

People who saw this accident said they feared there was going to be an explosion after the crash. The fronts of both trucks are completely mangled, and witnesses say they saw flames sparking up from under the fire truck.

The impact decimated the 18-wheeler and sent the Engine 311 fire truck spinning, splintering a fence as it was pushed by the U.S. Postal Service tractor trailer.

A taxi following it, heading west on South Conduit Avenue, couldn't stop in time.

"I heard the siren, and then I come out of my living room and I see all of this," one witness said.

The most seriously injured in the accident was the driver of the tractor-trailer. He was said to be in critical condition late Thursday night.

Five firefighters were transported from the scene and rushed to Jamaica Hospital. They were reportedly sitting at various places of the fire truck, and witnesses say some of them may have been thrown from the truck.

The driver of a medallion taxi was hurt, and is said to be stable in a hospital.

Officials say Company 311 was responding to an automatic alarm, which means it was an accidental trip with no fire or no false alarm.

Authorities said late Thursday night that there is no criminality suspected but that the investigation is ongoing.