A truck driver is calling a Good Samaritan the “hero of the day” after he pulled the driver from his wrecked rig in Illinois last week.
The accident happened off of Route 6 in Peoria, Illinois.
According to 25 News Now, motorist Brandon Lawson was traveling along Route 6 when he noticed a highway sign shaking and dust blowing up from a roadside ravine. Lawson stopped, noticed another man looking down into the ravine, and got out of his car to investigate, and that’s when he saw a semi truck overturned at the bottom of the ravine.
Lawson instructed the other bystander to call 911 as he approached the truck cab he later described as “mangled,” and “smashed.” As he made his way towards the cab, he noticed diesel fuel pooling around the truck “like a river” and knew he had to get the driver out of there.
When he reached the cab, he found the trucker awake but not fully responsive.
“I said ‘I’m gonna get you out of here’ and just grabbed a hold of him and started breaking tree limbs out, and had to rip the cab apart a little bit, the cab was flat, smashed,” Lawson said. “I had to drag him through the trees, through the oil.”
Once Lawson got the trucker up to the top of the ravine and away from the truck, he noticed the driver was having trouble breathing. The trucker told him that there was an inhaler in the truck, and Lawson went back down to retrieve it, along with some other personal items. Thankfully, that’s when first responders arrived.
As first responders attended to the trucker, the semi truck caught fire at least twice. The truck driver sustained some injuries in the incident, but none were considered to be life threatening.
Since then, the truck driver, who has not been identified, sent a Facebook message to Lawson thanking him for the help.
“My wife and I owe you a great debt of gratitude,” the message reads. “You are the hero of the day!!”
Officials have not released the cause of the crash. No further information has been released.