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Wrongful Death Claim Filed After Fire Truck Crash

On Behalf of / Monday, 07 April 2014 / Published in Car Accident, Personal Injury, Truck Accident, Wrongful Death

Honda Causes Fire Truck Crash

In June 2013, a Poway Fire Fighter that was driving a fire truck, hit a Honda Accord due to the drug-impaired driver of the Honda running a red light.  However, according to a claim that was filed by the parents of the nineteen year old that was killed in the crash, the driver of the firetruck hadn’t passed the required test allowing him to be able to operate the fire truck legally.

The claim also states that the fire truck was not using the siren at the time of the crash. How did this fatal crash happen? It all happened when the driver of the Honda Accord ran a red light as he was heading south on Midland Road at Poway Road. The driver was forty-five year old Robbie Gillespie. The crash took place on June 20th around four in the morning.

The fire truck was responding to a medical call and was going east on Poway Road when it hit the Honda Accord. In the Honda’s passenger seat was the nineteen year old who died at the scene, Evelyn Jean Courtney.

Robbie had been recently bailed out of jail for a drug arrest, just a few hours before the accident. According to the authorities, he was under the influence of methamphetamine at the time of the crash.

Robbie pleaded guilty in the San Diego Superior Court. The charges were gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated as well as the possession of methamphetamine. He faces ten years in prison and eight months, pending a competency hearing which is scheduled for later this month.

Attorney, Michael Kinslow who is representing Evelyn’s parents, did say that Robbie was partly to blame in the crash, however they think that the firefighters should have also been more careful. The claim states that there were four firefighters on the truck that day. Josh Fernandez was the official engineer on duty that day.

Fire Truck Claim States:

Fernandez and Capt. (Andy) Page were allowing someone who had not yet passed the engineer’s exam to drive the truck — (firefighter/paramedic) James Kleppel.

Kinslow’s statement about the claim:

If the person who was actually licensed and certified to drive the truck had been doing so, the accident might have been avoided.


He also stated that the firetruck had it’s emergency lights on but did not have the siren going.

The Claim Also states:

The failure of the crew of the fire truck to use due care in the operation of the truck was the proximate cause of my daughter’s deaths.


Aguirre Morris & Severson LLP