Two Victims In Deadly Braggs Ambulance Wreck Remain Hospitalized

Wednesday, June 29th 2011, 12:21 pm
By: News On 6 & Emory Bryan, News On 6

BRAGGS, Oklahoma -- Two people remain hospitalized after an accident involving a Muskogee ambulance that also killed two people.

The accident happened Tuesday afternoon just north of Braggs, on a section of Highway 10A that is both curvy and hilly.

6/23/2011 Related Story: Victims Identified In Fatal Ambulance Crash Near Braggs

The ambulance was enroute to Muskogee from the Fin & Feather resort. It was a non-emergency trip, according to Rebecca Smith, with Muskogee EMS.

According to the Highway Patrol, a grey car crossed the center line and hit the ambulance.

Two people in the car, 32-year-old driver Carrie Cash and 6-year-old Holden Collins, were killed.  Another passenger, 32-year-old Amanda Coffey-Collins, was transported to a Tulsa hospital in critical condition.

Braggs Collision

Two medics and a patient were onboard the ambulance. Only the patient, 68-year-old Elsie Mullen, remained hospitalized Wednesday.

"The medics are doing well. We were very pleased that they have minor not minor injuries but not life threatening injuries. They're of course bruised and banged up and sore but actually overall doing quite well," Rebecca Smith, Muskogee EMS, said.

The medics were identiefied as 37-year old Karen Swimmer and 34-year-old Chance Bates.

Troopers say Swimmer was behind the wheel of the ambulance and Bates was in the rear with a patient.

Smith credits the seatbelts and airbags with saving the life of the ambulance driver. While in the back, the patient was secured with belts and a shoulder harness. The paramedic in back was helping the patient and was not belted in, which is a hazard of the job.

Smith said they'll be reviewing what happened, even though the Highway Patrol's initial investigation found the other driver was at fault.

"Now, we do an internal investigation," she said.  "Our health and safety officer is working with law enforcement and the vehicle manufacture, sheriff's department and OHP and were doing our own internal investigation in conjunction with them."

"As far as how bad it is, it's the worst we've had and I think we just are all feeling very fortunate that it wasn't worse than what it was for us," she added.