On Monday, Sept. 30, Cal Fire engine 1267 crashed near Honeydew on the way to a wildland fire in the vicinity of Landergen Road. No injuries were reported and the single-vehicle collision's cause is still under investigation, but the engine rolled over at least once while leaving the roadway for unknown reasons.
The vehicle's occupants self-extricated from the wreckage. Still, the crash forced Cal Fire and the Honeydew Volunteer Fire Department to split their resources between the two scenes.
"This is what they call an incident within an incident," said Honeydew fire chief Claire Trower. "It makes it really complicated. People peel off and cover each location."
"We were responding to the fire on Landergen Road, and in the first 15 minutes I heard on the radio that Engine 1267 was entering the response area. Then dispatch in Fortuna said they lost contact with 1267, they weren't responding," Trower said. "A few minutes later, I hear this shaky voice saying ‘1267, we've rolled our truck, everyone's okay.' Then medical people who were responding to the fire detoured toward the crash site."
The original fire burned roughly five acres, and was called the Landergen Incident due to it's location near Landergen Road near the Smith-Etter turnoff about a mile south of Honeydew. Trower says that she and the property owner were surprised as the fire came just days after heavy rains.
"It wasn't a tremendously hazardous fire," Trower said. "It probably did a little good. But not knowing how it started was a little unnerving to the property owner.”
PHOTO COURTESY OF KYM KEMP
Cal Fire engine 1267 is shown here after rolling over while responding to a vegetation fire. No one was injured in the accident.