ROCKLIN (CBS13) — A driver was pulled from his burning truck just seconds before it explodes thanks to some good Samaritans including a police cadet, two off-duty California Highway Patrol officers and a civilian.
It was a multi-vehicle crash on Highway 65 and I-80 Tuesday.
Jonathan Sullivan doesn’t remember much about that evening while driving home from work.
“A good Samaritan told me I reached my hand out, but I don’t remember anything like that, but that’s how she was able to pull me out of the vehicle,” Sullivan said.
That good samaritan was a Roseville Police cadet Kaityln McKinney who just happened to be driving by.
“I’m going to cut over because I don’t know if anybody is going to stop knowing that a lot of people don’t stop,” McKinney said
This helmet cam video showed what firefighters saw as they pulled up to the multi-vehicle crash. A pickup truck swallowed by flames.
“It was on fire that bad?” Jonathan said shocked while watching the video for the first time. “That was a hard one, I can’t believe I survived that.”
Neither can McKinney.
“Right as we were pulling him out, the backside of the car exploded,” she said.
Never thinking she’d help save a life so early in her career.
“I knew that he was trapped in there and I needed to go try and help save his life,” McKinney said.
But she didn’t act alone. A civilian first on the scene, Chris Maffei said it was one of the most important things he’s ever done. Two off-duty officers helped also.
“I knew I was put there for a reason and so were the other people who helped me pull him from the car and thank them for helping me,” McKinney said.
Sullivan suffered a serious burn on his elbow, but remarkably no broken bones.
“I can’t believe what she did made such a big difference with what could’ve happened. I could still be in the truck,” Sullivan said.
Though they haven’t seen each other since the crash, she’ll forever hold a place in his heart.
“Thank you very much,” he said.
McKinney hopes to join the force one day, but right now she’s too young and first wants to finish college.