A fire truck responding to report of a Tennessee state trooper off the road and unresponsive, slid on the same icy road near Corryton in Northeast Knox County, overturned and struck the cruiser with the trooper still inside.
The trooper, however, apparently died of natural causes – a suspected heart attack – according to a report published by WATE-TV.
The trooper, Michael Slagle, 53, was headed to court early Friday morning when he radioed in to say he went off the road, according to the television station. Officials say the fire truck crash was not a factor in the trooper’s death.
Two hours after the trooper reported he had slid off the road, his wife and a neighbor arrived on the scene and found Slagle unresponsive in his cruiser. They summoned help by calling 911.
A Rural Metro Fire Department engine from Knox, Tenn., arrived on the scene and apparently skidded on the ice went off the road and hit the cruiser, according to a report published by the Knoxville Sentinel News.
As the fire engine, which was carrying five firefighters, left the road, it hit the neighbor who had gone down the 10 foot embankment to check on Slagle. The bystander suffered injuries that were reportedly minor. He was taken to the hospital for treatment.
None of the firefighters were injured, according to the Knoxville Sentinel News report.
According to Tennessee Highway Patrol Spokeswoman Jennifer Donals, died of what appeared to be natural causes after his cruiser slid off Longmire Road. Attempts to revive him at the scene were not successful.
The extent of damage to the fire engine were not reported, but photos from the scene show the commercial cab and chassis apparatus laying on its passenger’s side with its nose touching the front of the cruiser. Click Here For Photos