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Colorado police officer steps in to help teens involved in severe crash

Northglenn police officer describes stepping in to help teens involved in severe crash
Northglenn police officer describes stepping in to help teens involved in severe crash 03:02

Following a severe crash in Commerce City earlier this week where six people were hurt, one first responder is sharing how he stepped into action to help save a child.

"The road is a crazy place. You need to be paying attention at all times," said Northglenn police officer Cameron Woods.

Woods has been working with the Northglenn Police Department for the last four years. On Tuesday morning, he and his partner were driving to do a follow-up on an accident they had in their jurisdiction in the previous week when they drove by the intersection of 88th Avenue and Dahlia Street.

"We thought it was a brush fire initially and then once we got closer, we realized it was an accident, a severe accident at that," said Woods.


A car driven by a 14-year-old with three kids inside struck a guardrail, veered into oncoming traffic and struck a minivan with two female adults inside. The car plummeted into a creek nearby.

"I think the accident happened approximately 20 to 30 seconds before we physically were on the scene," said Woods.

The teen driving the car suffered the most serious injuries after being ejected into the creek. When Woods got out of the car, he says he saw an off-duty Denver firefighter in the water with the child.

"My first instinct was just to go straight over there," he said. "I climbed over the car, got into the water, and we were able to lift the child out of the water and we stayed with him till the fire department arrived and we were able to get him over on to the road again, and then they were able to transport and do everything they needed to do."


Those 10 minutes in the water were enough to help save a young life.

"When you get accidents of this magnitude and kids involved, it's a very stressful thing and it heightens what you're doing," said Woods.

However, it is instincts and training that make a split-second decision easier for first responders like Woods.

"Really just start helping. Find something to do. Find something, find somebody to help," said Woods. "At the end of the day, a lot of the training is you're helping somebody else first and if something happens to you, that's just the price we're going to have to pay, because we're out here to help other people not us."


Woods says he is thankful for the other first responder who was on the scene before he arrived to help. He also says this incident is a reminder to be aware of everything happening on the roads, because it can be you or someone else that gets hurt if you are not paying attention.

Commerce City police told CBS News Colorado it still expect everyone involved or impacted in the crash to survive.

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