A Vancouver firefighter is recovering from significant lower body injuries after becoming entangled in a fire hose that was being dragged by a car on the Downtown Eastside.

The incident happened around 1:30 a.m. PT while firefighters were battling a fire at an abandoned apartment building on East Hastings Street between Main and Columbia. 

A man in his 50s drove over a working fire hose, which became caught on the underside of his car, according to police. The hose then ensnared the firefighter, knocking him to the ground.

"The firefighter was left motionless with extensive lower body injuries," said Deputy Fire Chief Brian Godlonton.

The firefighter had only been on the job 1.5 years. He was treated at St. Paul's Hospital and has since been released, but is expected to face a long road to full recovery.

Vancouver firefighter injured in hose incident caused by drunk driver

A Vancouver firefighter was injured when he became entangled in a working fire hose that was being dragged by an alleged drunk driver's car. (Tanya Fletcher/CBC)

Safety message

Godlonton said fire crews deal with these types of dangerous and preventable situations all too often.

"We're asking and pleading for drivers to slow down and give first responders — all first responders — a safe working area when these types of situations take place."

According to Vancouver police, the driver was ticketed for impaired driving and issued an immediate three-day roadside prohibition. His car was also impounded.

With files from Tanya Fletcher