A Snoqualmie family rushed over to save a stranger inside a burning car that was involved in a wrong-way crash on I-90 on Christmas night.
A spokesperson for the Washington State Patrol said a wrong-way driver was not impaired when they caused two crashes on westbound Interstate Christmas night.
Troopers said the alleged wrong-way driver, an 85-year-old Spokane man, was taken to a hospital.
No one else was seriously injured.
All westbound traffic was initially shut down at about 9 p.m. and closed for about four hours.
KIRO 7 reached out to Washington State Patrol again to get further updates on the case. We are still waiting to hear back.
Cell phone video captured several people rushing over to the burning vehicle that night.
KIRO 7 spoke with Nathan Webb, who was one of the first people to jump in, and his quick actions possibly saved the driver’s life.
“I was really worried for them,” said Webb.
Webb said he and his wife were driving home after celebrating Christmas with his parents.
When they approached the onramp to westbound I-90, near Snoqualmie Parkway, they spotted a burning vehicle across the interstate.
His wife captured the moment when her husband and other people rushed over.
“It was a little scary because you don’t see it every day,” he said. “A little bit scared, but I was really worried for like I didn’t know if the person was in there.”
Webb said he tried to open the driver’s door, but the door was stuck.
“I walked up to the car and kind of moved the airbag to see if the driver was in there. And when I saw him, I tried to tug on the door, but it was so mangled that there was no way we were going to get it open,” he said.
He said he couldn’t reach the driver from the passenger side since the seat would not move.
“I almost felt a little helpless at that point,” he said. “I kind of knew there was nothing we could do once we couldn’t get the door open with four or five of us pulling on it.”
Webb said the driver seemed to be unconscious.
“You could tell he wasn’t going to wake up,” he said.
Webb and his wife quickly called his father and asked him to bring over fire extinguishers to put out the flames.
Matthew Webb, Nathan’s father, said, “He (his son) was really calm when he called me. And then when he said the car was on fire. Carrie and I went to get him the fire extinguisher. He wouldn’t have called me unless there was an issue.”
When Matthew Webb arrived at the scene.
“Then it got real, real quick,” he said.
Webb and his son quickly rushed over and sprayed the burning vehicle.
Webb said he and his son did not think about their own safety when they saw a man who needed help.
“You don’t think about it in the moment. I’m getting a little emotional right now.” He said, “I just think I’m proud. How else can you feel? It helps there was a good outcome out of it.”
KIRO 7 asked Nathan Webb why he decided to rush to the burning car when he and his wife had been driving home.
“If I was in that situation, I hope other people would help me,” he said. “We’re all human. Everybody can love on some people some more. Any time people can lend a helping hand, they should.”
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