Austin-Travis County EMS (ATCEMS), Austin Fire Department and Austin Police Department crews responded to a car fire in the 1000 block of West Stassney Lane Monday afternoon.
ATCEMS said initial reports were of a "vehicle completely engulfed" with a patient trapped inside. Thanks to quick-thinking officers, a man's life was saved before the truck eventually exploded.
The AFD later said APD officers were the first to arrive at the scene and pulled the person out of the truck seconds before it was fully engulfed in flames.
EMS said one adult was taken to Dell Seton Medical Center with serious, potentially life-threatening smoke inhalation injuries.
"We salute our brothers in blue from [Austin police] — Officers Chandler Carrera and Eddie Pineda — who bravely risked their own lives at this car fire yesterday just before we arrived, smashing the window and dragging the man to safety," the AFD said Tuesday.
On Wednesday, the APD said it was proud to recognize both officers for their "heroic efforts."
Police said they received multiple calls about an unconscious man inside the burning truck with his foot on the gas pedal. When both officers arrived within two minutes of being assigned the call, they found the truck fully engulfed in flames with the man still inside.
When they were unable to make contact with the man, they broke the window and pulled the man to safety, where he was treated by ATCEMS. Shortly after, the truck exploded.
Assistant Police Chief Robin Henderson said Officers Pineda and Carrera received a chief's coin of recognition for their heroic actions.
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