Man steals, wrecks HFD ambulance

Police said the trip started when a man stole the ambulance from the hospital and took off

Published On: Dec 24 2013 11:22:52 AM CST   Updated On: Oct 22 2013 07:55:51 AM CDT
HOUSTON -

Someone stole and wrecked a Houston Fire Department ambulance Monday night in southwest Houston.

Investigators said a man who came to Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital possibly stole an ambulance after he was told he would have to wait for treatment. 

Police said the trip started when a man stole the ambulance from the hospital and took off. Police said they got the call from people driving down the road who spotted some crazy driving in the ambulance.

"We got the call from dispatch saying there's an ambulance driving very unsafe," said Sgt. Walter Gaw with the Houston Police Department. "From what they were telling us, an ambulance was taken."

At the same time, another ambulance driver spotted the runaway ambulance and called for help.

"Very erratic.  He was jumping the medians and stuff to get on the freeway," said HFD District Chief James Watson. "Our ambulance spotted that and saw that something was wrong and began following them and began talking to our dispatcher who called HPD."

Police said they caught up with the ambulance as the man took the exit at Bissonnet. He did not make it much further. 

After a brief chase, police said he totaled it as he hit the pillar at Bellaire under Beltway 8. The reserve ambulance is totaled. Firefighters said it was in the mix as another ambulance was serviced.

The Houston Fire Department said the theft is under investigation. The department would not say if the ambulance was left unattended and running while it was backed up to the hospital.