Amazing Rescue on Freeway Overpass

By Frank Heinz
|  Friday, Mar 25, 2011  |  Updated 10:26 AM CDT
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A <a title=Fort Worth firefighter recalls pulling a man from a truck dangling off an overpass." />

Scott Gordon

A Fort Worth firefighter recalls pulling a man from a truck dangling off an overpass.

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Amazing Rescue on Freeway Overpass

Truck driver, two motorists rescued from crash on overpass.

Watch Amazing Rescue of Big-Rig Driver

The driver of a big rig is rescued from the cab of his truck as it dangles off an overpass.
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While the cab of a big-rig dangled precariously off a highway overpass in south Fort Worth early Thursday, firefighters used rigging equipment to rescue the driver and two other motorists trapped beneath a tanker truck in their car.

The cab came to rest, with a Honda Civic trapped beneath its trailer, while hanging off of an overpass on the westbound lanes of the Interstate 20 overpass leading to southbound Interstate 35W sometime after 4 a.m.

A ladder firetruck was used to keep the truck's cab from falling, and to secure the driver and rescuers.  At about 5:30 a.m., Fort Worth fire Lt. Michael Lugo managed to enter the dangling cab and reach the driver, who was eased out of the wreckage.

"I got on the cab and opened the door and looked down in there and there he was," Lugo said. "It was a pretty emotional conversation. You know, he was definitely relieved."

Lugo said he remember exactly what he told the terrified driver: "You're in good hands. You got 30 well-trained guys here who are going to do a good job and you're going to get out of it. So this is what I need you to do. this is what we need to do together and this is how it's going to work. Let's go."

The driver was strapped into a harness and was pulled to safety.

Just before 7:30 a.m., Lugo and other firefighters were able to free two motorists, a man and a woman, who were pinned in their car beneath the big rig.

The driver of the truck refused medical treatment while those in the sedan were transported to a local hospital.  All injuries were minor and not life threatening.

The tanker truck was believed to be used to carry fracking water, though it was empty at the time of the crash, according to the Associated Press.

The cause of the crash is under investigation, though the Fort Worth police said early Thursday afternoon that the driver of the Honda may be charged with driving while intoxicated.

NBCDFW's Amanda Fitzpatrick, Susy Solis and The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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