Firefighter airlifted to hospital now recovering at home

Fate of rescue truck remains unknown; township temporarily using truck loaned by Town of Erin

ELORA – The Centre Wellington firefighter who was airlifted to a hospital in Hamilton last week, was released from hospital the same day and it appears he will make a full recovery.

The fate of the rescue vehicle remains up in the air, however.

“He’s doing very well,” Fire Chief Tom Mulvey said of the firefighter.

“He’s recovering at home. He’s got cuts and bruises and some pain, but he’s driving around and he’s looking forward to returning to work when he can.”

On Jan. 25, a fire truck slid into a ditch while responding to a commercial alarm activation at Bauman Agri Systems on Sideroad 10 between Elora and Fergus.

Four firefighters were in the cab of the truck, and one became trapped when the truck tipped on its side.

The trapped firefighter was extricated and airlifted to a trauma centre in Hamilton.

“We were told it could be pelvis or leg or femur – these are all very serious. We’re relieved to hear that wasn’t the case,” Mulvey said.

The rescue truck was custom-built and cost about $600,000, he said.

At the very least it sustained damage to the side it tipped on and also during extrication.

But there could also be damage to the frame or other components of the truck.

Mulvey said on Jan. 31 that it is being towed to an appraisal centre, “and we’ll know this week if it can be fixed.”

He said he expects insurance will cover the cost.

In the meantime, Centre Wellington is using a fire truck loaned from the Town of Erin.

Officials in Erin “have graciously offered us the use of a fire truck that was recently taken out of service,” Centre Wellington officials stated in a Jan. 28 Twitter post.

They also thanked the Town of Erin for the assistance, which will help the fire department “continue to protect the people that live and visit [Centre Wellington].”