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Truck driver trapped in burning truck “did not die alone”


On Wednesday, a man from Virginia was trapped inside his rig and died after being involved in a fiery crash on Interstate 20 in Atlanta, Georgia.

The man, Scott Brantley, 40, of Big Stone Gap, Virginia, was traveling on I-20 East in Morgan County east of Atlanta when he crashed.

Morgan County Fire Chief, Jeff Stone, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) that the crash happened around 3:35 p.m. near mile marker 124.

Stone then added, the crash was about 2 miles from the Green County line and firefighters had to fight traffic for 10 miles before they arrived on scene. Unfortunately, they did not make it in time to save the trapped truck driver.

Good Samaritan Struggles To Save Trapped Trucker

While first responders were on the way, a witness of the crash was eager and ready to help. Rudy Lanuza was passing the truck when he stopped and rushed to help.

“I was the one who got close to see if we could open the cab door, but there was no way we could get it open,” Lanuza told the AJC.

Lanuza tried to pry the cab door open, but he couldn’t get the door unjammed. He said he tried to use a chain on the back of his pickup to pull the door off but it would not open.

He tried 3 times to pull to cab door open; however, the door remained closed and his truck frame was bent.

“It bothered me,” he said. “I called my boss crying. I didn’t go to work.” Although Lanuza’s efforts were admirable, he was heartbroken enough to seek professional help the following day.

Stone said when he and fire officials arrived, the cab was “fully involved” with fire and the front end of Brantley’s truck was crushed.

“His legs were pinned… It wouldn’t open…” Lanuza said.

Brantley was pronounced dead at the scene and no other injuries were reported.

Following the crash, officials discovered that the box truck that collided with Brantley’s truck was towing a mobile generator. The fuel from the generator ignited and engulfed Brantley and his truck in flames.

Fuel tanks on both the box truck and Brantley’s truck remained full after the crash.

Lanuza offers words of condolence to Brantley’s family; that even though his death was tragic, there were people fighting to try and save him.

“He was not alone,” Lanuza said.

Authorities are still investigating the exact cause of the crash.


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