AMESBURY — Fire Chief Kenneth E. Berkenbush reports that two Amesbury Fire Department apparatus, an engine and an ambulance, were damaged when they slid while parked at a call during Saturday evening’s slippery and snowy conditions, and one of the fire trucks sustained further damage when a small electrical fire broke out later in the evening.
On Saturday, March 12 at 8 p.m., Amesbury Fire Rescue responded to a reported motor vehicle crash on Whitehall Road. Amesbury Engine 1 and Ambulance 2 responded and stopped at the crest of a hill. Both vehicles had their parking brakes set, but given slippery conditions at the time, both vehicles soon began sliding backwards for several feet. Engine 1 stopped at the edge of a curb, but Ambulance 2, which was parked in front of the engine, slid into the front of the engine.
Neither vehicle sustained serious damage, but both had to wait for an Amesbury Public Works sander to arrive and provide grit to help the apparatus gain the necessary traction to get underway again.
No one was injured at either the initial motor vehicle crash — which also involved a vehicle skidding off the road in the slippery conditions — or the incident involving the apparatus.
However, upon returning to the firehouse, Engine 1 experienced a small electrical fire and had to be pulled out onto the apron of the fire house, where it was quickly extinguished. Fire officials determined the fire was caused and confined to external battery jumper terminals.
Engine 1 will be out of service until necessary repairs and inspections can be made. Ambulance 2 was inspected and deemed fit to resume duty.
A spare engine from the City of Newburyport arrived on loan this weekend and will be in service until Engine 1 is repaired. Amesbury Fire Rescue, Chief Berkenbush, Mayor Kassandra Gove and the City of Amesbury thank Newburyport Fire, Chief Christopher LeClaire and Mayor Sean Reardon for their support.