Berkeley ambulance catches fire during patient transport; no injuries

Berkeley Fire Department ambulance (file photo). Photo: Emilie Raguso

A Berkeley Fire Department ambulance caught fire in the Berkeley Hills while taking a patient to the hospital Wednesday evening, authorities report.

No one was injured, and firefighters were still working to put out the blaze as of about 7 p.m., said Berkeley Fire Chief Dave Brannigan.

Just after 6:30 p.m., the ambulance caught fire near Glendale and La Loma avenues while the crew was on a medical call.

The crew got the patient out of the vehicle and into another agency’s ambulance, which then proceeded to the hospital, Brannigan said.

Once the fire was out, BFD would have the ambulance towed from the area, he said.

Brannigan said the ambulance fire was “definitely a first” for the department, as far back as he could remember.

The fire appeared to have started in the ambulance’s engine compartment where the batteries are, he said, based on preliminary information.

BFD will do an investigation to determine what happened, Brannigan said.