New York State Trooper John Vescio was off-duty when he heroically risked his own life to save a driver whose car crashed into a gas pump.
Vescio, a senior investigator with the New York State Police, had stopped by at a Mobil Gas station on the Hutchinson River Parkway. As he was filling out the tank of his own car, a high-speed vehicle slammed into the pump which collapsed on his car.
The dramatic video shows the exact moment of impact when the pump instantly caught fire. Vescio initially ran away from what he thought would be a massive explosion. However, his professional training trumped his human instinct as he went back to save the driver just before a massive fireball engulfed both their vehicles.
It was later found out that the 69-year-old driver had blacked out while exiting a suburban New York highway before crashing into the pump.
"It happened so quick," Vescio said in his first public comments since the incident. "It was hard to think. I pretty much just reacted."
Although he had been injured himself when the pump fell on top of him, he went back to pull the elderly driver out. It wasn’t easy. “I got the door open, but you could see that the actual compartment was compressed,” Vescio said at a press conference. “You could see the way his legs were tucked under by the seat, his seat belt was on, he was pretty much helpless.”