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22nd Apr 2024

Hero bystanders rush across road to rescue man from burning vehicle

Charlie Herbert

Hero bystanders rescue man from burning vehicle

The driver has thanked the ‘Good Samaritans’ for saving his life

Dash cam footage has captured the moment motorists rushed across a highway to rescue a man trapped in a burning car.

At around 18:30 on Thursday, a Honda ran off the road on the I-94 in Minnesota, USA, hit a lamppost and burst into flames, according to the the State Patrol. 

When people noticed that the driver, Sam Orobovich, was still trapped in the vehicle, several jumped out of their vehicles to rush over and try and get him out.

You can watch the moment below.

One of those was Kadir Tolla, whose dash cam captured the whole thing.

He had been heading to work in Saint Paul, when he came across the crash. He was one of several heroes who rushed to help the man in the vehicle.

He told FOX 9: “I saw a car on fire. Then I said somebody is probably in there.

“That could be me one day. What would happen if I was in that situation and my life was in the hands of strangers that I don’t even know.”

The car had come to a stop right next to the highway barrier, which was blocking the doors. The group of Good Samaritans can be seen desperately trying to force the door open whilst someone else uses the fire extinguisher from their car to try and douse the flames.

Tolla explained: “He was awake. He was saying pull me out, pull me out, pull me out.

“We could crack the door a bit and give him a little air.”

Eventually, one of the group was able to smash the car window and they pulled the man to safety.

“Right when we got him out, the fire started going inside the car from the driver’s side. I’m glad he got out in time,” Tolla said.

He admitted it was the “scariest moment of my life”, adding that it is “something that I’ll never forget.”

Orobovich managed to escape with no serious injuries but was taken to hospital by paramedics to be checked over.

In a statement, he thanked everyone who came to his rescue.

He said: “I am alive today because several Good Samaritans and professional first responders saved my life. Fred Rogers used to say that whenever someone sees something scary, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’

“On Thursday evening several drivers along I-94 in St. Paul pulled over, ran from their cars, and tried to free me as my car was bursting into flames along the berm of the freeway. My airbag deployed after my car hit a lamp post and guardrail. I came to just before a Highway Helper broke open my window and everyone pulled me to safety. I survived with only minor superficial injuries.

“As an attorney who has represented caregivers in Minnesota for over 40 years, it comes as no surprise when well-trained professionals snap into action to save someone’s life or keep them out of harm’s way. But it is incredibly heroic when people driving down the highway choose to put themselves at risk by running toward the flames to extract a stranger from a burning car that could explode at any moment.

“My family and I are incredibly grateful for these heroes. I sincerely thank everyone, including Kadir, Tessa, those who hammered at my car door amid the flames, and Minnesota’s FIRST Highway Helpers.

“I look forward to thanking them all in person.”

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