Driver in Westport fire truck crash to ‘vigorously’ fight to keep KCFD job
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - The attorney for Dominic Biscari says his client will fight to keep his job.
“Dominic will do everything he can to retain his position on the fire department,” wrote Attorney Kevin Regan. “His team is prepared to vigorously fight to help him keep what the City has wrongly taken from him. We are disappointed by the City’s arbitrary decision and believe it will be overturned.”
A city spokesperson previously stated the city will seek to terminate Biscari’s employment.
This follows Biscari’s Alford plea on Tuesday in the fatal Westport fire truck crash, which killed three people in December of 2021. An Alford plea means Biscari maintains his innocence but believes the prosecution’s evidence against him would likely result in a guilty verdict.
Attorney questions city’s responsibility in crash
Biscari’s attorney also released the following statement, saying the city “failed” Biscari and other firefighters.
Every night, while the City sleeps, these brave men and women dash to their firetrucks and risk their lives to save our lives, our homes, and our property.
When the alarm bell rings, they fearlessly answer the call to duty.
Sadly, the City has failed to answer the bell for its firefighters. It provides unsafe intersections, inefficient radio communication, outdated stoplight technology, and meaningless legal representation for these brave public servants.
The City’s actions toward Dominic are without Due Process and lack just cause, and they know it.
The City is not taking care of its citizens.
It raises sharp questions about training and the intersection itself. It also claims the city has half-installed a safety system called “Opticom,” which would automatically change traffic lights.
“Sadly, the City has failed Dominic and his fellow firefighters in several ways,” the statement says. “We hope the City will take measures to make sure this type of accident never happens again. The City has the technology to install Opticom receivers at traffic light intersections. The firetrucks already have transponders to send signals to the receivers.”
KCTV5 reached out to the city for comment but has not heard back.
Overland Park has used the system for decades and confirmed to KCTV5 that it is on all fire trucks and ambulances operating in Overland Park.
Global Traffic Technologies claims a working Opticom system reduces crashes by 70%.
The statement also criticizes the training for drivers.
“The City also failed to provide any uniform mandatory training for Dominic to act as a driver of a fire pumper truck,” it says. “The only training provided for these young drivers is on-the-job training without any formal instruction or more hands-on training that people receive in other fields such as motorcycle police, bus drivers, helicopter and airplane pilots, and other skilled transportation personnel.”
Attorney Kevin Regan also says the city is aware that Broadway and Westport is a dangerous intersection, and has failed to make it safer despite commissioning several studies.
On Dec. 15, 2021, Biscari was driving Pumper 19 toward a house fire. According to crash data and video surveillance, Biscari was driving over 51 mph in a 35 mph zone and ran a red light. An accident investigator found Biscari entered an intersection with a limited view of cross traffic, through a red light, at a speed that was too fast for the conditions he faced.
Tami Knight was a pedestrian who was hit and killed. She was an adventurer who climbed mountains and skydived. Her boyfriend saw her get hit and tried to rescue her from the rubble.
The driver of a SUV that was struck, Jennifer San Nicolas, was an animal lover who worked with her passenger Michael Elwood at a local restaurant.
The families have filed lawsuits against Biscari and the city.
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