SF: On-duty firefighter arrested for DUI


An on-duty San Francisco firefighter who was arrested on suspicion of DUI and leaving the scene of a crash that involved a fire truck late Saturday night had no prior disciplinary record, fire officials said Monday.

Michael Quinn, 43, was arrested following the collision, in which tge fire truck he was driving struck a motorcycle around 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Fifth and Howard streets in the city’s South of Market neighborhood, police said.

The fire truck was responding to an emergency call with its lights and siren on when it struck the motorcyclist, who was seriously injured but is expected to survive, police said.

Quinn was later arrested after apparently leaving the scene of the crash, according to police.

Fire department spokeswoman Mindy Talmadge said Quinn is a 23-year veteran of the department.

Quinn has no prior disciplinary record and, in fact, has two merit awards for his actions as a firefighter, said Tom O’Connor, president of San Francisco Firefighters Local 798, the union representing the city’s

“He’s never been in trouble his whole career,” O’Connor said. “It’s very uncharacteristic.”

The incident comes weeks after Quinn narrowly escaped serious injury or death in a hang gliding accident off of San Francisco’s Fort Funston.

Jason Bowen, a bystander who witnessed the incident from a nearby cliff, said on June 5 he saw a man who was in a hang glider that fell apart and dropped hundreds of feet into the water below.

A fellow hang glider identified the man who fell as Quinn, said Bowen, who works in the undergraduate admissions department of San Francisco State University.

A fisherman and two other Good Samaritans on the beach helped rescue Quinn, who was tangled in the wires of the hang glider, Bowen said.

“He probably would have drowned if they wouldn’t have grabbed him,” he said.

Sheriff’s department spokeswoman Susan Fahey said Quinn has since been released from jail following this weekend’s arrest.

District attorney’s office spokesman Alex Bastian said Quinn had not been charged in the case as of late this afternoon.

(Copyright 2013 Bay City News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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