Patient says she feared for her life as ambulance chased stolen HFD vehicle

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Patient says she feared for her life as ambulance chased stolen HFD vehicle. (KTRK)

As a Houston Fire Department truck clung to a southeast Houston ditch, a woman said she was holding on for her life.

"It was petrifying," Erika Anderson said. "I thought I was going to die."

She wasn't in the paramedic vehicle, but instead in the ambulance that chased the stolen truck.

"I'm still bouncing up and down," Erika Anderson said. "The man in the ambulance, he's driving all real fast, speeding and swerving."

The ride started on Weston Street Wednesday around 4:00 p.m.

Anderson's mom, Bern, called 911 after her daughter, who suffers from epilepsy, had a seizure.

The paramedic truck was also on site.

After Anderson was loaded onto an ambulance, she said the truck was stolen, and her ride took off. The truck crashed about 15 blocks from where it took off.

"Words can't even explain how I feel right now," Bern Anderson said. "I'm calm right now with you, but I'm very upset."

After chasing the truck, Anderson said the ambulance returned to her street. She said paramedics waited for police and she didn't get to the hospital until 7:00 p.m.

"Three hours," Bern Anderson said. "It took three hours for her to get to the hospital."

What's worse for Erika? The next time she suffers a seizure, she said she is not sure what she'll do.

"I would rather die," Erika Anderson said. "I'm not getting in no ambulance. I'm not getting in no paramedics. I'd rather lie across the bed."

HFD said besides the driver, no one was in the stolen truck that crashed.

Patrick M. "Marty" Lancton, the president of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association, released the following statement in response to Anderson's account:

"Patient safety and delivery of excellent service are the first priorities of Houston firefighters. We recognize that medical issues can be traumatic and confusing, but I am confident that the Houston firefighters responded safely and professionally throughout this incident."

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