5 San Francisco Firefighters Await Suspensions Over DUI Crash

By Jean Elle and wire reports
|  Wednesday, Nov 27, 2013  |  Updated 7:48 AM PDT
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Five members of the San Francisco Fire Department face possible suspensions stemming from an incident in which a firefighter suspected of being drunk drove a ladder truck into a motorcyclist and left the scene. Jean Elle reports.

Five members of the San Francisco Fire Department face possible suspensions stemming from an incident in which a firefighter suspected of being drunk drove a ladder truck into a motorcyclist and left the scene. Jean Elle reports.

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Five members of the San Francisco Fire Department face possible suspensions stemming from an incident in which a firefighter suspected of being drunk drove a ladder truck into a motorcyclist and left the scene.

The San Francisco Chronicle says two assistant chiefs and a battalion chief could be suspended for their actions the night of the crash in late June.

Two lower-level firefighters face more serious discipline that requires the Fire Commission's review.

Michael Quinn was driving a fire truck with the siren blaring, responding to what turned out to be a false alarm, when he struck a motorcyclist at the intersection of 5th and Howard streets.

The collision threw Jack Frazier into a fire hydrant.

Frazier's attorney, Chuck Koro, told NBC Bay Area his client is still recovering from extensive injuries -- a collapsed lung and broken bones.

Video shows Quinn, who recently resigned, at a bar guzzling water immediately following the crash. His blood-alcohol level was measured above the legal limit at 0.13 percent when he showed up at the fire station. The other firefighters at the accident passed drug and alcohol tests, officials said.

"This guy made an incredible mistake, egregious mistake," Koro said. "But it seems to be systematic."

Koro points to a 2004 grand jury report that found widespread drinking in San Francisco fire houses. He has filed a lawsuit against Quinn and the City of San Francisco to stop the reported drinking at San Francisco fire houses.

"I'm confident it's a minority of firefighters, but it all has to end," Koro said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
 

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