A car horn blares nonstop in the background. The flames light up the scene, a deadly beacon for deputies Braedon Boznango and Carlton Carrington.
There’s a woman yelling to them, pleading with them to hurry: A man is trapped in the fireball. “Where?!” one of the deputies yells as he nears the car. “Where? Where? Where?”
It’s an intense scene, and difficult to watch. The entire thing was caught on the deputies’ body cameras. They work together to haul the man from the broken vehicle with their bare hands and as they pull him out, it’s clear he’s on fire.
Again using their bare hands, they pat at the man’s pant legs, trying to put out the flames, then they quickly drag him to a puddle. The video has been shared thousands of times since the accident occurred on Dec. 13.
“Sheriff Brian Hawthorne is proud to release this video of the heroic actions of two Chambers County Sheriff’s Deputies,” the post began. “At approximately 8:33 p.m. on December 13, 2018, there was a major motor vehicle crash in the 3800 block SH 124, just south of Winnie.
“Upon arrival at this crash scene, Chambers County Deputies Braedon Boznango and Carlton Carrington found a vehicle fully engulfed in flames from the rollover crash. There was an unconscious male lying in the front seat with his abdomen and legs on fire.
“The two deputies approached the vehicle without regard for their own safety and began reaching inside the vehicle to rescue the sole occupant. Deputies Boznango and Carrington were able to pull the unconscious male through the door window opening and onto the ground.
“Both deputies were able to place the injured man into a nearby water puddle and extinguish all flames on his body. The male was airlifted to a Houston hospital in critical condition.”
Thankfully neither Boznango nor Carrington suffered serious injuries despite having no fire protection, but some of their equipment melted from the heat.
“My first thought was, ‘we can’t let this guy burn to death right in front of us,'” said Carrington, according to KTLA.
“I just remember watching the flames run up the man’s face. There was, I guess, a draft. In my mind, I’ve moved thousands of people from burning vehicles, but in my mind, I’ve never factored in the heat.”
“I just kind of tuned out all the ambient noise and focused on making sure I could do what needed to be done,” Boznango added.
“It’s what we do. It’s our job. From the smallest thing to more severe cases like this.”
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