Utah Motorcyclist Pulled From Under Burning Car By Bystanders
Brandon Wright was driving his motorcycle just outside the Utah State University campus in Logan, Utah, around noon on Monday when a black BMW pulled out in front of him, forcing him to lay down his bike to avoid a crash, Logan police told Salt Lake City’s ABC 4.
Wright’s bike slammed into the car and caught fire while he slid under the vehicle and became trapped.
Flames shot in the air as bystanders flooded 911 with calls.
“Looks like someone might be under the vehicle. Cars are burning. You better send somebody out here,” the caller said, according to tape played on ABC 4.
Despite the dangers posed by the fire – “I think it’s going to go right now,” one caller said to 911 dispatch — a dozen construction workers working at a nearby site on the Utah State campus and other students and bystanders rushed to the burning car to help.
In dramatic video, a nearby camera captured the bystanders lifting the burning sedan off the ground and pulling Wright’s limp body to safety, all before firefighters arrived.
“I was afraid. It was very close the fire. It was a very tall fire,” Anvar Suyundikov, one of the bystanders who helped pull Wright from the flames, told ABC4.
Meanwhile, police officers and bystanders grabbed fire extinguishers from nearby buildings to help extinguish the flames.
“I’m impressed. I’m impressed that that many people would get involved especially when there’s fire involved,” Assistant Logan Police Chief Jeff Curtis told ABC 4.
Firefighters were able to extinguish the flames, while Wright was flown by helicopter to nearby Intermountain Medical Center in critical condition.
“I saw a lot of blood, especially close to the head,” Suyundikov recalled to ABC 4, of Wright’s condition immediately after the rescue. “Before I pulled he wasn’t breathing, and when I pulled, he started to breathe.”
Wright’s mother and stepfather told ABC News today he is alert and aware of everything that happened.
Wright himself expressed gratitude for the help of strangers who came to his rescue, telling the Associated Press on Tuesday that his life was saved by the actions of those bystanders.
Doctors placed rods in Wright’s legs during surgery Monday night. Now in stable but critical condition, he is expected to remain in the hospital for at least another three to four days to recover from a broken femur, broken tibia, broken pelvis and burns on both his feet.
The driver of the BMW suffered minor injuries.
“Brandon was able to meet with family Monday night and said he is very humbled, and owes so many people his life,” Tyler Riggs, a cousin of Wright’s told the Salt Lake City Tribune today. “Brandon and our entire family would like to express our deep gratitude to all the people who stopped at the crash scene . . . to help rescue Brandon.”
The crash remains under investigation.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.