Attendant, patient die in ambulance rollover near southern Las Vegas Strip

Updated February 13, 2018 - 5:33 pm

“Mayday! Mayday!” the ambulance driver’s voice shouted from the radio just before midnight Tuesday.

But when emergency personnel following GPS locators found the vehicle on its side on the westbound on-ramp to the 215 Beltway near Las Vegas Boulevard South, they found only one survivor among its three occupants.

Killed in the rollover crash was the first responder riding in the back of the AMR ambulance, 57-year-old Garry John, and a still unidentified patient. The driver, who was not identified, was hospitalized at University Medical Center with unspecified injuries before being released before noon.

“Definitely the physical injuries are minor so he’s fine in that way, but he’s devastated by this incident,” AMR regional director Scott White said at a news conference Tuesday.

The driver’s mayday call notified AMR supervisors and local law enforcement of a “code 5” situation, which signals someone is in need of immediate help, but didn’t provide a location.

Following signals to the scene

AMR personnel, Nevada Highway Patrol investigators and Clark County Fire Department crews followed the signals from the GPS trackers to the 215 on-ramp, where they found ambulance MC 10 on its side, its headlights still on.

White said the ambulance had picked up the patient from a local hospital at 11:29 p.m. and was taking him to a nursing facility, when it hydroplaned on the oil-slicked ramp. It rolled several times until it it hit a rock embankment on the side of the highway.

Nevada Highway Patrol trooper Jason Buratczuk said the weather was most likely a factor in the crash, after overnight rainfall left valley roads wet and slick.

Before Monday evening’s showers, the valley hadn’t seen significant rain since Jan. 9, according to the National Weather Service.

“This was a first responder we lost. When NHP responds to these fatal crashes it’s always a tragedy, but it really hits home when it’s one of our own,” a choked up Buratczuk, tears welling in his eyes, said early Tuesday at the scene of the crash.

Just before 5 a.m., John was given a line of duty escort to the Clark County coroner’s office by Highway Patrol troopers, Metropolitan Police Department officers and members of AMR management.

John had been with the emergency response company for four years, White confirmed. His death marked the first time in at least 25 years that an AMR employee was killed in the line of duty in Southern Nevada.

Assigned to medical transport

He was assigned to AMR’s non-emergency medical transportation division, which is dedicated to caring for and transporting patients who are bedridden or in wheelchairs, said White.

As a transport division employee, John would not have been an initial first responder on the night of Oct. 1, White said, when a mass shooter perched on the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay killed 58 and injured hundreds more attending the nearby Route 91 country music festival.

“But I can tell you that everyone in this organization worked either a direct role or a support role in 1 October or the days following,” he said.

White said the driver had been with the company since December 2016.

The Highway Patrol will lead the investigation into the fatal crash. Buratczuk, the patrol spokesman, said dashcam footage will help investigators piece together the moments before the ambulance crashed.

No other details surrounding the crash were immediately available, but White confirmed John was restrained by a seatbelt and sitting next to the patient, who was strapped in on a gurney.

The Clark County coroner’s office will identify the patient once their family has been notified, and determine what killed the two.

“This is a sad day for our teams and our community,” White said. “Our heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of our team member and the patient as they deal with their loss. We are grateful one of our other team members survived and is out of the hospital.”

Contact Rio Lacanlale at or 702-383-0381. Follow @riolacanlale on Twitter. Contact Max Michor at Follow @MaxMichor on Twitter.

Metro Asst. Sheriff Brett Zimmerman on Aug. 8 officer-involved shooting
Metropolitan Police Department Assistant Sheriff Brett Zimmerman met with media Monday to discuss the details of the 14th officer-involved shooting of the year. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Matt Kelly Elementary School hosted its third annual Back-to-School Red Carpet Program
Matt Kelly Elementary School hosted its third annual Back-to-School Red Carpet Program where community and business leaders joined to welcome students back with an inspirational welcome. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Star Trek fans on show’s enduring popularity
Star Trek fans at the Star Trek Convention 2018 talk about why they think the show has stayed popular across the years Thursday, August 2, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Nonprofit provides clothing for homeless
Sydney Grover of Can You Spare A Story?, talks about how she founded the non-profit organization. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Family remembers deceased mother
Family members of Adriann Gallegos remember her. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Restoring classic Corvettes to perfection
Members of the National Corvette Restorers Society Convention talk about what it takes to earn the NCRS Top Flight Award for a restored Corvette at South Point in Las Vegas on Tuesday July 17, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Clark County recount votes in commission’s District E primary
Clark County staff begin the recount requested by candidate Marco Hernandez in the democratic primary for the County Commission's District E seat on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Long-running local hip hop producer wants Vegas rappers to shine
Las Vegas Hip Hop producer and co-owner of Digital Insight Recording Studios Tiger Stylz reflects on 30 years of music production in the city. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Construction for new 51s ballpark underway
New home of the Las Vegas 51s is planned to be finished by March 2019 in Summerlin according to team president Don Logan. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like