PALMER TWP., Pa. - Police and firefighters risked their own safety to rescue a driver from a burning car.

"They had a person unconscious, heavily entrapped in the vehicle, and a fire protruding from the engine to the passenger compartment," said Jim Alercia, Palmer Township police.

It was a scene of horror on Main Street and Van Buren Road in Palmer Township on Saturday night.

Two cars had collided, and one burst into flames with a driver trapped inside.

Police arrived within minutes with minimal tools, but they were determined to get the 23-year-old driver out of his burning car.

"No fire trucks, no water, no rescue tools," said Alercia. "Our officers took immediate action and started extinguishing the fire with extinguishers we carry in our patrol vehicles."

Six first responders worked together to not only put out the fire, but pull the unconscious driver out of his car as quickly as they could.

Once freed, he was immediately transported to a local trauma center where he was in stable yet severe condition, awaiting surgery.

"The incident is under investigation right now to determine which vehicle may have crossed the center line to cause the collision," Alercia said.

Police said the driver of the other vehicle involved suffered minor injuries.

Alercia not only serves as a Palmer Township police officer, but as the deputy fire chief in the township as well.

He says everyone who responded acted fast, and were able to save that man from the flames.

"What our officers and fire officers did that night, is beyond words," he said.

While putting their lives on the line, one police officer and one firefighter did have to be transported to the hospital. They have since been released.

Police are asking anyone who witnessed the crash to call them at 610-253-5844.

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