1. #1
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    Exclamation Edmonton Ambulance Stolen And Taken For "test Drive"

    Ambulance thief leads police on marathon chase

    By Ben Gelinas, Canwest News ServiceJune 9, 2009 1:10 AM

    A man stole an ambulance from Edmonton paramedics, threw on an EMS jacket and led police on a marathon chase across western Alberta on Sunday evening.

    RCMP officers finally pulled the ambulance off the road in the Jasper area about 10 p.m., following a four-hour pursuit from the city centre.

    The ambulance was stolen around 6 p.m., after paramedics apparently stepped away from the rig while responding to an address near downtown Edmonton.

    Edmonton police tracked the ambulance using its onboard GPS, which showed it heading west out of the city on Hwy. 16, the main route out of the city, Edmonton Staff Sgt. Ken Ogilvie said.

    The chase was hardly high-speed, Ogilvie said. Most of the time, the ambulance driver puttered along at or below posted limits.

    "Many attempts were made to stop this vehicle," Ogilvie said. "But an ambulance is a very sturdy vehicle. This is like trying to stop a tow truck."

    The driver took the ambulance west on the highway before going onto a rural road, through the country, then back down onto the highway. He continued west before doing a U-turn, leading his pursuers east for a while, before again turning west, where he apparently settled in for the long haul.

    The RCMP took over the pursuit, following the ambulance west until Edmonton police say the driver was arrested in Jasper -- about 320 kilometres west of the Alberta capital -- around 10 p.m.

    The alleged ambulance thief was the only one in the vehicle when it was stolen -- he was not, apparently, a patient. {Not until after the arrest, anyhow, then he got a nice white "I Love Me Jacket" }

    © Copyright (c) The Victoria Times Colonist

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    Wow, big time excitement in my little home town!
    September 11th - Never Forget

    I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

    Sheri
    IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
    Honorary Flatlander

    RAY WAS HERE FIRST

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    I hear that there are a couple of red faces today since supposedly they either left the keys in or actually running. Only rumor though.

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    That won't look good on a resume!!!

    Jason Knecht
    Assistant Chief
    Altoona Fire Dept.
    Altoona, WI

    IACOJ - Director of Cheese and Whine
    http://www.cheddarvision.tv/
    EAT CHEESE OR DIE!!

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    On a hunch, I checked the local weekly (online version) newspaper ..... the Snaring River bridge is probably about 6-10 miles from Jasper, straight stretch of highway.

    Police chase ends near Jasper

    BY AMY WILSON-CHAPMAN
    Reporter

    A 29-year-old man, who allegedly stole an ambulance in Edmonton and drove it to the Snaring River Bridge before being stopped by an RCMP spike belt, has been charged by police with dangerous driving, flight from police, and theft over $5,000.

    John Hamilton Buchanan allegedly stole the ambulance while paramedics were attending to a call in Edmonton. He then evaded the Edmonton Police Service (EPS) and RCMP detachments until Snaring River bridge just east of Jasper before a big truck spike belt stopped his progress at 10 p.m. on Sun, June 7.

    The St. Alberta man was monitored by the EPS, Stony Plain, Edson and Jasper RCMP at various stages after he fled Edmonton heading west along Highway 16 in the vehicle.

    Once the ambulance stopped, the lone occupant bolted on foot, but was apprehended by Jasper RCMP officers quickly and before making it to the woods, said Cpl. Wayne A. Oaks, communications manager for the RCMP Alberta Division.

    The accused was taken into custody and showed no signs of aggression, but Oaks said he did become aggressive once in custody and was taken to the Hinton RCMP detachment.

    Durinf the chase, according to Oaks, the man was able to use the ambulance’s radio communications to monitor the RCMP communications, which enabled him to avoid the two other spike-belts that were deployed after he left Edson.

    Once the RCMP switched to cell phones, rather than radio communications, they were able to effectively communicate without the accused knowing the next location of the spike belt, which led to his arrest.

    Prior to leaving Edson, the RCMP detachment had attempted to pull over the driver, even activating their emergency lights, as the driver failed to stop for a number of stop signs.

    After the first failed attempt, police got ahead of the vehicle and again directed the ambulance to pull over using a PA system. According to the RCMP report, the “actions of the driver led officers to believe that (the) driver may be attempting to ram the police car, resulting in evasive actions that prevented a collision.”

    While the RCMP report on the incident stated that there was no damage or harm to any people or police vehicles, the ambulance - which was sitting in the Jasper Municipal compound on Monday morning - had a substantial amount of damage.

    It’s unsure how the vehicle was damaged, but Oaks suggested it maybe due to the erratic driving of the ambulance, which saw it drive east in westbound lands and vice versa, as well as in and out of the ditches.

    Buchanan has also been charged with attempt to escape lawful custody, assault of a peace officer, refusing to comply with demand for breath sample and operating an uninsured motor vehicle. He will appear in Hinton Provincial Court on June 17.



    ©Jasper Media Group Inc. 2009

    http://www.fitzhugh.ca/current/story1.html
    September 11th - Never Forget

    I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

    Sheri
    IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
    Honorary Flatlander

    RAY WAS HERE FIRST

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