User uShare Login | Register

Along with posting photos, videos, and stories, your uShare account lets you post Classified Ads, recipes on What's For Dinner, and Announcements.

26° View Weather Current Conditions Sioux Falls Change Location
Set Weather Options




[0] My Saved Articles
Find local businesses
on the KELO Pages!


Ambulance Taken For Joyride In Rapid City

October 23, 2012, 6:03 PM by Derek Olson

Ambulance Taken For Joyride In Rapid City

Paramedics with the Rapid City Fire Department faced an unexpected challenge over the weekend when their ambulance was stolen during a call, and this isn't the first time it's happened.

Nothing seemed to be out of the ordinary when firefighter-paramedics responded to a call Saturday night.

"A standard call, person requesting medical assistance inside the residence.  We park as close as we can to that location," firefighter-paramedic Brett Johnson said.

But when Johnson walked out of the patient's home, he was shocked to see his ambulance driving away.

"It took a little bit just to set in.  I thought maybe it was one of our additional crew members helping to reposition the ambulance for better loading of the patient.  But as it continued away from the scene, I realized that was not the case," Johnson said.

Even though it was recovered just a few blocks from the scene where it was taken, paramedics had to request another ambulance, adding time to their call.

"Had this been a more serious call for the fire department, this could have really jeopardized patient care for us and our ability to load that patient quickly and get them to the hospital," Rapid City Fire Department Fire Chief Mike Maltaverne said.

It's the second time this has happened since 2008.  And although the department keeps drugs and other equipment in ambulances under lock and key, officials say locking the vehicle while on calls just isn't realistic.

"If we send a crew member outside to get a piece of equipment and somebody inside has the keys, it's going to make us less efficient," Maltaverne said.

The fire chief says the department is looking into ways to stop future thefts, but says incidents like this are rare.

"When you're talking 10,000 to 11,000 calls per year and this only happens once every five to seven to eight years, it is a rare occurrence.  Nonetheless, it's very alarming to us," Maltaverne said.

Witnesses were able to help police identify a suspect in the theft.  26-year old Mike Johnston was arrested for DUI and unauthorized use of a vehicle and is free on a $300 bond.

Fully stocked, an ambulance is worth around $250,000.

Previous Story

Next Story




View news

You may also like

Roslyn Man Arrested In Shooting

11/21/2015 4:46 PM

A Roslyn, South Dakota man is accused of trying to kill another man overnight.

Full Story
Ronald Neels Sentenced To 75 Years In Prison

11/23/2015 5:59 PM

For more than a decade, nobody knew Ronald Neels was sexually abusing a victim inside his home near Garretson. The victim never said anything about th...

Full Story | Watch
Joseph Patterson Sentenced To Life In Prison

11/19/2015 3:55 PM

A judge has sentenced a man who was found guilty in the death of a two-year-old to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Full Story
Jared Fogle Gets More Than 15 Years In Prison

11/19/2015 12:20 PM

A judge has sentenced former Subway pitchman Jared Fogle to 15 years and eight months in prison for trading in child pornography and having sex with u...

Full Story
Tyrese Ruffin's Mother Speaks Publicly For First Time

11/25/2015 6:18 AM

In her first and only television interview, Doohen talked about her son, who she called the joy of her life.

Full Story