Firefighter Shot From Inside Burning Building

Heat caused loaded firearm to go off
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 26, 2021 7:45 AM CST
Firefighter Shot From Inside Burning Building
"The loaded firearm discharged due to heat conditions caused by the fire, not by the intentional actions of a person," fire chief Dennis Klass said.   (Getty Images/Igor Vershinsky)

A firefighter in western Wisconsin was critically injured when he was shot from inside a burning building—but nobody pulled the trigger. The Cornell Area Fire Department says Justin Fredrickson was operating a hose line outside the structure when the heat caused a loaded firearm to discharge, CNN reports. The bullet traveled through an exterior wall and hit the 35-year-old firefighter in the abdomen. He was treated at a local hospital before being airlifted to the Mayo Clinic in Eau Claire for surgery. Assistant fire chief Matt Boulding said Thursday that Fredrickson, a 16-year veteran of the department, is still in the ICU six days after the incident and has undergone three surgeries, but is in "good spirits and on the road to recovery," WEAU reports. (More firefighters stories.)

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