KAYSVILLE — Four police officers were injured on Thursday afternoon attempting to help a suicidal man who had set himself on fire at a gas station.
It happened at the Top Stop Chevron station at 320 West 200 North in Kaysville. Police said the man had doused himself with gasoline inside the restroom.
UPDATE: From Waylon DeRobaum, manager of Chevron, this incident happened in the bathroom. “employees heard screaming and smelled gas” @KSL5TV
— Nicole Vowell (@NicoleVowellKSL) April 5, 2018
“Indications are he was pouring gas on himself and threatening to light himself on fire,” Kaysville Chief Sol Oberg said.
The officers intervened and were attempting to prevent the man from igniting the gas with a lighter when the fire started.
“One officer was burned fairly significantly on his back and legs. One officer on his arms and part of his face. Another officer on portions of her face,” Oberg said. “There’s concern for all the officers that there’s some burns inside their mouth, lungs or something that would block an airway.”
Ambulances transported two of the officers to the University of Utah burn center. The other two officers ended up at Davis Hospital and Medical Center. One of them was released later Thursday afternoon.
“That’s a big portion of our police department and they’re all fantastic representatives,” Kaysville City Council member Michelle Barber said.
The suicidal man also survived. He was transported by Airmed helicopter to the University of Utah burn center.
A witness, Liz Healey, shared video with KSL showing the medical helicopter on the ground shortly after the fire.
KSL’s Chopper 5 also recorded the aftermath, as police from other agencies rushed to the business to provide assistance.
A police dispatch recording from Broadcastify.com captured the dramatic call of “officer down.”
Chief Oberg said he was proud of the injured officers.
“There’s no hesitation in going in and trying to save this individual as well as the other occupants of the store in what could have literally been an explosive situation,” Oberg said. “It’s a mixed bag of emotion. A lot of pride but a lot of heartbreak, too.”
Free resources are available for people who are experiencing crisis in Utah. People in need of help are encouraged to call the UNI crisis line at (801) 587-3000. Licensed clinicians are available 24/7.
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