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Medical emergency believed to have caused truck to plunge into ditch

Watch Bellingham firefighters train for rescues

Bellingham Fire Department firefighters practice rescuing civilians and each other during training Wednesday, March 30, 2016, at the Britton Loop Road training facility. The firefighters and trainers communicate by radio during the training, mimic
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Bellingham Fire Department firefighters practice rescuing civilians and each other during training Wednesday, March 30, 2016, at the Britton Loop Road training facility. The firefighters and trainers communicate by radio during the training, mimic

The Bellingham Fire Department had to extract a man from a truck Thursday, July 18, after it plunged into a ditch near Cornwall Park and the intersection of Meridian Street and Squalicum Parkway.

Crews responded at 3:24 p.m. to 3424 Meridian Street for the report of a traffic collision, according to the PulsePoint app.

“From what was reported to us, the male driver of the pickup truck was coming off Squalicum Parkway onto Meridian when he suffered some sort of medical emergency,” Bellingham Fire interim chief Bill Hewett told The Bellingham Herald. “That caused him to veer off the road, go through a guardrail and go into the ditch.”

The ditch is located just north of the entrance to Cornwall Park, on the east side of Meridian Street. Hewett estimated it was approximately 10 to 12 feet deep.

“It was a difficult extraction because it was down in the ditch,” Hewett said. “It was wedged pretty good in there, and it was a prolonged extraction to get him out of the vehicle and then immediately transported to the hospital.”

Due to medical privacy restrictions, the driver’s identity was not released, and his status could not be checked.

Hewett said the northbound lane of Meridian Street was closed for about 30 minutes while crews worked to get the man out of the truck.

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.
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