CBSN

California man recounts rescuing teenager from fiery crash

A teenager was entering the highway when she lost control of her vehicle on a wet surface and was struck by two other cars. The vehicle burst into flames.

CBS Sacramento

LINCOLN, Calif. -- An 18-year-old California teenager is recovering from injuries sustained in a fiery crash two days after strangers pulled her from a burning car, CBS Sacramento reports. Cierra Lee's mother, Jacklynn Marfill, posted a plea on Facebook to find the Good Samaritans who saved her daughter's life. 

"Anybody in that situation, anywhere, would have done the same thing," said Good Samaritan Tom Lowers.

Cierra Lee lost control of her car on a wet surface early Tuesday morning. She was hit by two other cars before her vehicle burst into flames. That's when Lowers and two other strangers ran toward the fire to help.

"If nothing was done, that person was going to die," Lowers said. "When I went up to the car, I went to the driver's side, and the heat was so intense that I couldn't even get to the door itself."

The door on the passenger's side was locked, which prompted Lowers and the others to attempt to break the glass.

lincoln-fire.jpg

Tom Lowers

CBS Sacramento

"I just [saw] kind of an outline of somebody that appeared to be slumped over the wheel," Lowers said.

He screamed to try to get Cierra Lee's attention. Thankfully, she hit the unlock button and the men were able to pull the door open and drag her to safety. 

"Relief," Lowers said. "It really was. She was upset. I think caught off guard."

It was all over within minutes. While the group waited for the ambulance, Lowers took pictures of the burning car just 20 feet away from the flames.

He said he's happy he was there at the right time.

Marfill said her daughter doesn't remember the accident. She's bruised and has some back pain, but she has spoken to the others who helped out. She says she can't wait to thank Lowers, too.