Firetruck pulls down roof at firehouse

May. 17, 2014 @ 04:23 PM

A malfunction on a fire truck Friday morning led to a supporting pillar in the apparatus bay being pulled and the roof collapsing at the Wingate Volunteer Fire Department.

Around 10 a.m., firefighters were working to drive one of the department’s trucks out of the building for maintenance when a door on the side of the vehicle malfunctioned.

The door began moving up and caught onto a pillar inside of the building and as a result caused the roof to collapse.

No one was injured in the incident, Brent Moser, a member of the fire department’s board of directors said.

“Fortunately all the debris fell on the back of the vehicle,” he said.

Two fire engines were affected by the roof collapse and were still parked inside of the station Friday afternoon as members of the fire department waited for an insurance worker and building inspector to come and examine the building. As a safety precaution, the two trucks were left where they were and no one was allowed inside of the building.

Since the roof collapsed, neighboring Union County fire departments have been assisting the fire department in the use of apparatus and other needs to help ensure proper fire coverage to the area.

“The fire departments in Union County really work together,” Moser said.

As of Friday afternoon, the amount of damage to the two trucks and the building had not yet been determined. The damage to the trucks was suspected to be minimal at that time. Fire trucks can usually cost around $500,000 and up depending on the size of the truck and the equipment, Moser said.

The fire truck that malfunctioned is a 1996 model while the other truck also stuck inside of the department is a 2000 model. Despite their age, the trucks are still serviceable and receive regular maintenance. The department has been working on a plan to eventually switch out some of its older equipment, Travis Stegall, chief of the Wingate Volunteer Fire Department said.

It has not been determined whether or not human error or some other issue led to the malfunction in the fire truck’s door but the situation is being investigated.

“We inspect our vehicles daily, we will continue to inspect our vehicles to ensure that this does not happen again,” Moser said.