Flagler Firefighters Honored After Saving Life Of Crashed UPS Trailer Driver

By on November 22, 2017 in WNDB News

Flagler County, FL – Several members of Flagler County Fire Rescue were honored with lifesaving awards following the April rescue of a UPS tandem trailer driver.

On Monday, Lt. John Keppler, Sean Walker, Alex Patton, Kyle Lockwood, Ty Epling, Kevin Buckler, Dan VanDeusen, Richard Steinhardt, and Kris Kendra received awards honoring their commitment to service on April 13. That day, they responded to a crash on I-95 where a UPS trailer overturned. They worked for 4 hours to rescue the driver, Scott Breidenstein, from the cabin. The cabin was crushed to the point that there were only 24 inches of room for the firefighter-paramedics to work.

“When crews arrived on scene, they saw what they believed to be a fatal accident due to the wreckage,” said Flagler Rescue Chief Don Petito. “The cab was positioned on its roof, crushed by the impact with only 24 inches between the floorboard and the roof of the cab.”

According to Flagler officials, the crews used Paratech threaded struts to help support the trailer and the Jaws of Life to take off parts of the cab. Each of the firefighter-paramedics received the Hurst Green Cross Award for using the Jaws of Life and a Paratech Rescue Award for using Paratech threaded struts.

“Crews had to first stabilize the large vehicle so that it would not shift during operations. They began to assess the patient and figure a way to get him out without crushing him or causing more harm,” said Petito. “The rescue crews tunneled into the cab of the truck to not only treat the patient, but to calm him and let him know what was going on.”

“I was working that night when the call came in that we had a truck in the woods, and it was four hours of wondering whether he was alive or dead,” said Diane Morris, Breidenstein’s supervisor. “You all did a tremendous job … on behalf of UPS, we are indebted to you. It doesn’t always turn out like this.” Morris said that Breidenstein has finished rehabilitation and has just married.

Photos courtesy of Flagler County.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.

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