Video: Car Caught on Fire, Man Saved
By Ian Smith
Published: November 19, 2015
Update: 10 p.m.
After his car crashed into a tree in College Station and burst into flames, an Austin man is thanking some good samaritans for saving his life.
The crash happened early Saturday morning on George Bush Drive near Texas A&M.
The dramatic rescue was even caught on camera by a police dashcam.
After losing control of the car and avoiding oncoming traffic, 21-year-old Jose Izquierdo's Chevy sedan hit a tree and burst into flames.
He was injured and trapped inside.
That's when Texas A&M Transportation Service employees Gred Stuenkel and Joel Luce and a student from the University of North Texas passed by.
"The individual was leaned up against the steering wheel bleeding. I asked him if he was alert, he looked at me with pain in his face," said Luce.
Officer Patricia Marty with the College Station Police also arrived on the scene. The fire was too intense to put out and the door jammed. The group had to break the windows with a sledge hammer to get Izquierdo out.
"I told them, 'please don't leave me,' and they're like 'no, we're not. If you leave, we all leave together,'" said Izquierdo.
Jose was then dragged to safety.
"As soon as they put my body on the stretcher, I fell asleep, I knocked out," said Izquierdo.
The impact of the crash was so intense that a piece of the car is embedded in the tree.
Izquierdo says those who saved him have given him a fresh start.
"That car could have exploded at any second and they stood by there for like 10 minutes straight trying to get me out with flames all over the car. So I have nothing but respect and admiration for those people," said Izquierdo.
Izquierdo is recovering from his injuries in a Houston hospital. He has already had three surgeries and is preparing for one more.
COLLEGE STATION--- A man is now recovering in Houston after he was rescued from a car fire early Saturday morning at the 800 block of George Bush Drive.
A police officer from College Station and two samaritans from the Texas A&M Transportation Services combined efforts with the rescue the man at 5:27 AM.
The 21-year-old male driver identified as Jose Izquierdo was stuck in the car from the accident. TAMU Transportation Service employees Joel Luce and Greg Stuenkel attempted to get the driver out of the car. When CSPD Officer Patricia Marty arrived to the scene, the car caught on fire. That's when Officer Marty quickly acted and used a fire extinguisher to put the fire out.
After the flames diminished, they attempted to pry the driver-side door open but it was wedged shut due to the damage caused by striking the tree in the accident.
The fire ignited again as the three rescuers worked on extracting the driver. It was in that moment that Officer Marty decided to remove the driver through the driver side window.
The whole attempt took four minutes of rescue from the time Officer Marty arrived to the scene.