Kristi Nelson, NBC 5 News
A series of accidents on Northbound U.S. 75 New Year's Day Eve morning sent a firefighter and the driver of a pickup to the hospital.
Two emergency crews got a dangerous start to the new year when they were hit minutes apart on U.S. 75 in Dallas early Tuesday morning.
First, a driver suspected of intoxicated driving smashed into a squad car. Minutes later, another driver plowed into a firetruck. In all, two people had to go to the hospital.
The series of crashes caused some chaos on Central Expressway.
Investigators said a Dallas police officer pulled over just before 3 a.m. and picked up a woman who was stranded on the side of U.S. 75 after some sort of argument. Seconds later, a driver rammed the squad car, which had been driving on the shoulder with its emergency lights on, from behind.
The 32-year-old driver was arrested.
The officer and the woman were not hurt.
About 10 minutes later, Dallas Fire-Rescue arrived and positioned a ladder truck to safely block the first wreck. Then, the driver of a pickup truck slammed into the side of the firetruck, investigators said.
One firefighter and the driver of the pickup truck went to the hospital, Dallas police said.
Police shut down all northbound lanes of Central Expressway after the second crash.
Many drivers rerouted onto the frontage road at Forest Lane, where a three-car crash occurred in all of the congestion.
A wrecker hauled off the damaged firetruck. Hazardous material crews worked to clean up a fuel spill from the ladder truck and clear debris to reopen U.S. 75.
Investigators are still trying to determine why the driver of the pickup didn't see the firetruck.
Editors Note: A previous version of this article said that two firefighters were injured. That information came from Dallas police; Dallas Fire-Rescue reported one firefighter was injured, as NBC 5 first reported. The Dallas Police Department has since updated its information to say just one firefighter was injured.