Changes Made After Wheels Fall Off Mass. Ambulance

Interim Gloucester Fire Chief Robert DiPoli said the lug nuts on the wheels weren't tightened properly, and that changes have been made to ensure the same thing doesn't happen again.


While transporting a patient to a local hospital recently, a crew on board a Gloucester Fire Department ambulance noticed the ride was bumpier than usual, but didn't realize that they were possibly in danger.

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After dropping Neil Burns off at Addison Gilbert Hospital, the rear wheels suddenly feel off as the unit pulled out of the parking lot, according to WBZ-TV.

Luckily, none of the crewmembers were injured.

While the ambulance is close to 20 years old and is the oldest in the department's fleet, interim Fire Chief Robert DiPoli told the news station human error was most likely to blame as the lug nuts on the wheels weren't tightened properly.

"Obviously we're making sure the wheels are torqued properly, that there's proper driver training in the department," he said. "We're assessing the maintenance program to make adjustments when needed."

Gloucester EMS Coordinator Sanders Schultz said that he hopes something can be learned from the incident.

"The first concern is that thank goodness it didn't result in someone getting injured," he said. "The most important thing secondary to that is to use these incidents as teachable moments to make sure it doesn't happen again."