Off-duty Miramar firefighter rescues driver in fiery crash

MIRAMAR, FLA. (WSVN) - An off-duty Miramar firefighter rushed to the rescue after two people were involved in a car crash in Martin County, Saturday afternoon, pulling the driver to safety moments before the vehicle burst into flames.

Miramar Fire Rescue Capt. Bruce Hill said this was the first time in two decades of experience that he’s seen a crash happen while off-duty. “The vehicle was kind of coming across the median full speed and went right in front of our vehicle and hit a telephone pole, knocked the telephone pole down,” he said.

Hill may not have been working at the time, but that didn’t stop his 25 years of training from kicking into gear.

As the firefighter got closer, smoke began to billow from the vehicle. “I went into the driver’s side, unbuckled her and pulled her out,” said Hill. “Then, right after I pulled her out is when the vehicle actually caught on fire,” said Hill.

In a matter of moments, the vehicle became fully engulfed.

A Martin County deputy who had responded to the scene pulled the male passenger out before it was too late. “They would have burned to death in the vehicle,” said Hill. “No question, absolutely.”

Hill helped the driver as firefighters and rescue crews arrived at the scene. Cellphone video captured the firefighter as he carried the victim and lay her on a stretcher.

“The lady’s alive?” asked a boy in the video.

“Yeah, the lady is alive,” replied a first responder.

Hill can only guess at what may have sparked the crash. “She appeared like she was having more of a medical emergency that actually triggered the incident,” he said.

The firefighter credited this rescue to the luck of timing. “We were there at the right time. We never go home that way. I went there just to get gas,” he said,

Now Hill wants to know what happened to the man and woman he helped save, whose names he doesn’t know. “I would definitely love to know what the ultimate outcome was, because I really hope that they didn’t have any long-term injuries from the accident,” he said.

Hill said he doesn’t consider himself a hero and did what anyone else would have done, but he’s glad he had the training to do it correctly.

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