7 firefighters injured in crew carrier rollover in New Mexico

BLM crew carriers by KME
BLM crew carriers by KME
Examples of BLM crew carriers. Photo by KME.

Seven firefighters were injured in the rollover of a Bureau of Land Management crew carrier in New Mexico on Tuesday, November 13. The injured personnel were part of a 20-person crew returning from an assignment in support of recovery from Hurricane Sandy when the truck overturned approximately five miles south of Taos, New Mexico. The firefighters were being transported from the Albuquerque, New Mexico airport to their home units.

According to a 24-hour report from the BLM:

Nine people were on board the vehicle: Seven BLM employees and two U.S. Forest Service employees.

One BLM employee and one U.S. Forest Service employee received serious but not life-threatening injuries, and remain hospitalized. The BLM employee was airlifted by helicopter to the hospital in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The U.S. Forest Service employee was transported to the hospital in Taos, New Mexico.

The seven other employees (six BLM, one U.S. Forest Service) were taken to the hospital for observation/or received treatment of minor injuries and were released.

An Interagency Fire Serious Accident Investigation Team and a Critical Incident Stress Management Team have been ordered.

We will hope for a speedy recovery for the injured firefighters.

Other crew carrier accidents in recent years:

  • 2009, August 22: Klamath Interagency Hotshots’ crew carrier rolled over near Los Molinos, CA while the crew was returning from a fire assignment. Eight were injured.
  • 2010, November 23: One firefighter was killed and 12 were injured when an inmate crew carrier was involved in a head-on crash with another vehicle on Highway 138 in Gorman, California.
  • 2011, July 5: A Valyermo Hotshots’ crew carrier rolled over while the crew was returning from a brush clearance project. Nine were injured.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.