COVENTRY, R.I. (WJAR) — A 13-year-old boy with autism somehow drove an ambulance out of a Coventry fire station and crashed into a parked police cruiser and motorcycle before rolling into a ditch, according to authorities.
Police told NBC 10 News Thursday night that three people were injured and taken to an area hospital, including the teenager.
The next day, authorities released video recorded by the motorcyclist's camera that offers a point of view shot of the head-on collision. They also released video that shows the ambulance being driving off the road.
Authorities said officers were called to Route 117 for a report of a mother and her autistic son having trouble walking down the road. Police brought the boy to Central Coventry Fire Station #7 on Flat River Road to be evaluated.
Police said as soon as the boy got out of the car to greet a firefighter, he jumped in the ambulance while the keys were in it.
While a firefighter tried to stop the boy, he drove the rescue across the street, where he hit a police cruiser and motorcycle before crashing into the ditch.
“The firefighter was actually on the rescue trying to get in the rescue and I believe was thrown off of it,” Col. John MacDonald of the Coventry Police Department said.
Chief Frank Brown of the Central Coventry Fire Department said the firefighter was thrown to the ground when the ambulance struck the cruiser.
“But the presence of this firefighter -- he drags himself over to the motorcycle to apply aid to him while he was hurt himself,” Brown said.
The firefighter and motorcyclist, as well as the boy, were transported to the hospital and treated for minor injuries. The motorcyclist only suffered a broken finger.
The firefighter was later identified as Scott Brown, 24, while the motorcyclist was identified as 20-year-old Nicholas Croce IV, of Johnston.
As a result of the incident, the department said that they were evaluating the protocols and procedures that call for keys to be inside emergency vehicles.