An aerial ladder truck is out of commission and the Cohanzie Fire Company’s building damaged after a firefighter backed the truck into building Sunday night, according to Waterford police.
The crash happened just before 8:15 p.m. on July 9, police said. Firefighter Mark Parker, 49, was returning from fueling one of the engines.
According to the police report, Parker said his foot slipped from the break and onto the accelerator. He hit a support column between the bays, “pushing it backwards on an angle and separating the bay doors from the building.”
Parker is a 23-year career firefighter with the town, wrote Bruce Miller, director of fire services for the Town of Waterford, in an email to NBC Connecticut. But he couldn’t comment on any other personnel employment details.
There’s visible damage to the truck’s nozzle and the water pipe, according to Miller. He said he’ll know the extent of the damage after the unit is evaluated by the manufacturer’s repair personnel.
If a new truck is needed, it could cost around $1 million dollars, Miller said, but he does not expect the repairs to be that extensive.
Waterford First Selectman Dan Steward said the town’s insurance should cover most of the cost of the truck and the building. The building is stabilized right now.
There were no reported injuries and no toxicology testing, since there was no suspicion Parker was under the influence, said Waterford Police Lt. David Burton.
“I heard him beep, beep, beep. All of a sudden, slam! (Parker) turned around and he realized what he had done,” said Jim Campbell, who watched what happened from across the street.
He described the sound like a shotgun.
“I felt bad for the guy, actually. I really did,” Campbell added.