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CELLPHONE DISTRACTION AND DRIVING ALMOST KILLS EMERGENCY WORKERS

On Saturday morning, March 30, 2013 just before 0700 hours, Clifton Park & Halfmoon Ambulance was dispatched to a medical emergency on the Southbound shoulder of the I-87 Interstate just above a major bridge. An ambulance returning from a local hospital was in the vicinity and first responded to the call, pulling well off shoulder behind the vehicle involved. A bystander vehicle was already blocking one lane of traffic. The crew donned ANSI vests and approached the patient in the vehicle. A police patrol arrived several minutes later, parking adjacent to ambulance in the slow lane to block traffic which had narrowed to two lanes. A Fire Chief arrived shortly thereafter, pulling to the front of the other vehicles.

While the crew was assessing patient and the police officer was approaching, a vehicle moving at a high rate of speed lost control, skidded sideways, narrowly missing the ambulance and crashing into the police vehicle, pushing it towards crew. There were no injuries to crew, patient or police officer and no damage to the ambulance. The ambulance originally dispatched to call arrived moments after impact and both crews treated the original patient and driver of the out of control vehicle (who had been talking on her cell phone).

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