Firefighter critically injured at I-5 rollover scene in Federal Way | UPDATE
November 23, 2011 · Updated 9:26 AM
From staff reports:
A South King Fire and Rescue firefighter was struck by a vehicle about 5:30 a.m. Sunday while assessing the scene of a rollover accident on southbound Interstate 5, about a half mile south of the 272nd Street exit in Federal Way.
Wynn Loiland, 52, suffered a critical head injury and was transported to Harborview Medical Center. His current condition is listed as critical but stable. The 31-year veteran firefighter has severe head and facial injuries, a collapsed lung and a broken arm, according to the fire district.
Loiland's wife and two adult sons were contacted and later assisted by South King Fire and Rescue in being transported to Harborview.
According to the fire district, a Chevrolet Blazer traveling on southbound I-5 apparently hit an icy spot and lost control while approaching the scene. The vehicle struck Loiland on the road's right shoulder — and narrowly missed another firefighter and a lieutenant, according to the district.
In an email Nov. 22, Deputy Chief Gordie Olson provided an update of Loiland's condition: "He has still not regained consciousness, but today his condition was upgraded to no longer life threatening. He has a long way to go."
Olson said the fire district has safety policies and training that are specific to working on the freeway.
"At this point, it looks like everything was in place," said Olson, noting that Loiland is "one of those guys everybody enjoys working with."
The accident is under investigation by the Washington State Patrol. There was no alcohol involved and no criminal findings have been found so far.