First Arriving Network
First Arriving Network

British Firefighter On Trial in Fatal Apparatus Accident

A British firefighter is facing a retrial on charges stemming from a 2009 apparatus accident that killed a civilian, and injured 10 others.

Bedfordshire firefighter Robert Hulatt, 28 was responding to a house fire on September 11, 2009 when his truck collided with another vehicle in an intersection. The accident fatally injured Abdul Lateef Kadri Sheikh, who died 25 days later.

At the time of the accident, Hulatt had the red light. He was charged with causing a death by dangerous driving, and a lesser charge of causing death by careless driving.

A jury failed to reach a verdict in December, 2010, and the case is now being retried. Prosecutor Wayne Cleaver argued to the jury that: “The Crown says this was not an unfortunate accident, it was a collision which could and should have been avoided.”

Here is a video on the original accident.

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About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.