Every time an ambulance is taken, the world makes a collective shake of their head. And make no mistake, ambulances are stolen often and in every state in the U.S. But what motivates someone to get behind a wheel and take it for a “joy ride” as some press refer to it. Unfortunately, the first motivation are keys in the ignition. Several agencies are now implementing new security features and doling out keys to both crew members in an effort to get the ambulance locked and secured in route to a patient.
The question was asked in 2011 by a medic on EMTLife, “So how many of you lock your bus whenever you leave it?
Answers were across the board, “We're supposed to every time and generally do. Oddly there seems to be no requirement that we lock the exterior compartments.”
We have had ambulances stolen and stuff from them stolen. So we have to lock the ambulance every time we are not in it. We are given 2 sets of keys.
Double lock here. Locked narc box inside of a safe with a numerical code that only the medic has the key and the combination.”
The Associated Press reported a 43-year-old woman was arrested for stealing an ambulance (left running) after she missed the last bus home.
“Police say the Springfield Township woman was arrested after a short pursuit.”
Sounds like she could have walked home “short pursuit” but the running ambulance was too tantalizing. Then they threw the book at her:
The woman was “charged with theft, failure to comply with a police order and driving under suspension.”
No word on whether she was an employee of the hospital and was forced to stay overtime which caused her to miss her bus. Full Story
A 23-year-old student at State University of New York (SUNY). In the early morning hours, “EMTs were working on an intoxicated patient says the Democrat and Chronicle newspaper.
And then…Colin Dahlberg alleged jumps into the “unoccupied ambulance” and drove it half a mile. Before disembarking he shouts into the radio, “God Bless America.”
Apparently Dahlberg was not in the ambulance when officers arrived, but he was standing nearby (with a blood alcohol level of 0.2). When officers approached, he was unable to act natural. Instead he took off and was later apprehended and took the picture above. Full Story
In Baton Rouge, Louisiana, “a man broke out of a psychiatric care hospital and stole an ambulance.”
The 40-year-old man “escaped the Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital and stole an Acadian Ambulance that was parked across the street at Affinity Nursing. When paramedics returned to their vehicle, the ambulance was gone.”
He was found via the Ambulance’s GPS, but not surprisingly, he refused to be taken into custody and led police on a chase through the city. He was eventually arrested and taken to East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, so he was successful in his escape from the psychiatric hospital.
From the Orlando Sentinel, Sanford Fire Rescue Truck 31 transported a patient to Central Florida Regional Hospital. One crew member stayed with the truck, but the guy to your left jumped into the driver’s seat, pulled out and hit a vehicle as he sped away, slowing down to let the firefighter.
A second ambulance gave chase as well until the stolen ambulance was cornered at a dead end where he jumped out of the truck and into a retaining pond.
He was apprehended by good Samaritans who held him until the police arrived. There is no information on what happened to the ambulance that gave chase. Full Story
Atlanta PD released a photo of the two young men, both in purple and clearly unfazed by the fact that they had just stolen Grady Hospital’s transport van from the Family Dollar Store and yes, the keys were in the ignition.
As luck would have it, one of the young men was recognized by his probation officer. After he confessed to the theft, he immediately gave up his brother.
“I handed him a form, which had his rights on it for him to read,” Officer J.R Young wrote. “He also signed and dated that form waiving his rights. After doing so he confessed to taking the vehicle. Along with his confession he stated his brother was the passenger.” Full Story
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A driver accused of stealing an ambulance in Charlotte late Thursday night is in custody. Charlotte-Mecklenburg police took the suspect into custody around midnight. No names or possible motives have been released. No one was injured in the incident. Full Story