Police: Good Samaritan may have saved driver's life - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Police: Good Samaritan may have saved driver's life

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Northbound traffic was down to one lane Wednesday after an early morning crash on Interstate 91 in Springfield.

"We are still investigating it," Vt. State Police Tpr. Paul Dean said. "A witness said that she didn't see any brake lights or any type of indication that he was going to stop."

Police say a two-unit FedEx truck veered off the highway, traveled up the granite embankment, then came crashing down, trapping the driver-- 50-year-old Richard Martin of Hardwick-- inside. The dire situation immediately got worse.

"It caught fire and then a passer-by stopped with a fire extinguisher," Dean said.

Reporter Adam Sullivan: Was the driver still in the cab when it was on fire?

Tpr. Paul Dean: Yes it was.

Adam Sullivan: So, someone could have saved a life here?

Paul Dean: Right. And there was a nurse who was traveling behind the truck driver who also stopped to assist.

Springfield firefighters responded and were able to extract Martin from truck, with only an injured hip. He was taken to the hospital as a crane worked to remove the truck from the side of the highway. Hazmat crews were also called to the scene.

"And they have to clean up approximately 200 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled from the gas tanks," Dean said.

A messy crash on the side of the interstate that law enforcement officials say could have been much worse.

"Very lucky today," Dean said. "He did have a seat belt on and that did contribute to the fact that he will walk away from this."

Thanks in part to a passing motorist who was in the right place at the right time.

Right now we do not know the name of the good Samaritan. Police say he was gone before they arrived on scene.

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