Man Survives 8 Hours Frozen Under Truck

By ABC News

Jan 9, 2014 10:01am

The frantic actions of a Florida woman who became concerned when she hadn’t heard from her truck driver husband ended up saving his life after he was pinned and frozen beneath his vehicle.

Tim Rutledge of Orlando, Fla., was on his way to Indiana to make a delivery Monday when he drove right into a snowstorm and his brakes froze.

In temperatures of 42 degrees below zero with the wind chill, Rutledge pulled over at a truck stop and got under his truck to fix the brakes. While Rutledge was on the ground, the truck shifted and trapped him underneath.

“It caught my left side and my left arm was pinned by the axle of the truck,” Rutledge told an Indianapolis TV station.  “I was yelling, but nobody could hear me.”

Rutledge became stuck frozen to the pavement beneath him, unable to move for nearly eight hours.

Meanwhile, his wife, Lisa, home in Orlando, became concerned and began calling his cellphone frantically and relentlessly.

The vibrations from her multiple calls eventually shook Rutledge’s phone loose from his jacket. Still unable to reach his phone, Rutledge used voice command to dial a number, not knowing whom he had called.

“I said, ‘Whoever this is, whatever you do, don’t hang up the phone,’” Rutledge recalled.  “If they hung up the phone it was going to be my last chance to talk to anybody.”

Rutledge had unknowingly called his boss, who figured out his location and called 911 for help.

Rescuers had to cut Rutledge out of his frozen clothes in order to free him.

The apparently uninjured Rutledge is expected to be released from the hospital later today and will fly home to Orlando.

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