Lightning strike injures paramedic, EMT

The two Kentucky EMS providers were loading a motor vehicle collision patient into the ambulance when the rig was struck by lightning

LEITCHFIELD, Ky. — A paramedic and EMT were injured when their ambulance was struck by lightning as they loaded a patient into the ambulance.

Grayson County EMS paramedic Benny Baxter and EMT Blake Schroerlucke were thrown to the ground by the lightning strike. Both were treated at a nearby hospital and released a couple of hours later, reported WAIN.

Baxter and Schroerlucke responded with Grayson County Sheriff's Deputy Bryan Hammons to the eastbound side of the Western Kentucky Parkway for a single-car crash. Rita Sanders, 54, lost control of her vehicle when it hydroplaned due to the rain. Her car went off the right side of the road and came to rest down an embankment.

Lightning strike file photo.
Lightning strike file photo. (NOAA image library)

Sanders complained of head and neck pain. She was wearing her seat belt, but the air bags deployed. Lightning struck as Sanders was being loaded into the ambulance. Hammons, about a foot away from the stretcher at the time of the lightning strike, was pushed forward by the lightning strike.

Dispatch was advised of the lightning strike and two more ambulances responded to the scene.

"Paramedic Baxter and EMT Schroerlucke are recovering at home after treatment and an extensive exam to clear them at Twin Lakes Regional Medical Center," Grayson County EMS shared in a Facebook update.

Sanders suffered non-life-threatening injuries. Her vehicle had moderate damage.

Clarkson Fire Department and Leitchfield Fire Department were also on scene.

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