Palm Bay Human Chain Rescues Driver From Burning Car

Palm Bay Residents Save Driver

On Sunday police and bystanders formed a human chain to pull a driver to safety. The driver was trapped in a burning SUV that had veered down a steep embankment after crashing into another vehicle.

The rescue took place on Route 1 in Palm Bay around 11:00 a.m., Mike Brandish, Palm Bay Police Department spokesman, told NBC News.

One group of people ran to a hotel across the street for a fire extinguisher while others formed a human chain from the road to the vehicle. WESH reported that Tom Sais, a bystander, rushed to the car, breaking its rear window and crawled inside.

Sais said the driver was dangling upside down, so he hit the seat belt button and the driver tumbled on top of him.

“He wrapped both arms around the seat belt and he said, ‘Leave me alone,'” Sais told the station.

Police showed up to the scene shortly after that. Brandish reported that two officers and six or seven bystanders joined together to pull the driver from the burning vehicle and to safety.

With the vehicle still burning the injured man was pulled out and up the embankment.

During the rescue police said the driver became combative and the officers had to physically restrain him while getting him back to the edge of the road away from the fire.

The driver was taken to Holmes Regional Medical Center fro treatment, his condition is unknown.

A few of the officers and bystanders involved in the rescue suffered minor scrapes and scratches, but were not seriously injured said police.

One bystander caught the whole rescue on video, which has gone viral and is national news now.