Driver, 2 children saved by firefighters after crashing into ladder truck

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Three Clayton County firefighters worked through their own injuries to save the lives of two children inside a car that slammed into their ladder truck Wednesday morning.

It happened at the intersection of Upper Riverdale Road and Old Dixie Road. Troopers with the Georgia State Patrol said a black Mercedes sedan ran a red light and slammed into the side of the 30 ton ladder truck. 

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Lt. David Leply, Sgt. Christopher Stripling, and Firefighter Jamal Daniel all suffered minor injuries, but still jumped to help the 18-year-old driver of the sedan and the two child passengers, ages 6 and 10. The firefighters pulled the trio from the crumped car.

A passerby, who had heard the collision, filmed the firefighters are they fought to save the life of a 6-year-old girl. She was later rushed to the hospital in critical condition.

Clayton County Fire Chief Landry Merkison praised his firefighters for ignoring their injuries and sticking to their training.

After all three of the car’s occupants were on their way to the hospital, the three firefighters were checked out at Southern Regional Medical Center.

Troopers said the firefighters were not on an emergency call at the time of the crash. The GSP is investigating the cause of the crash. No word on any charges. The names of those in the car have not yet been released.

Chief Merkison said that he could not recall an accident as severe as this in his 24 years of service.