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March 26, 2013
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Video: Ohio cops save man from burning truck

The officers used batons to break into the vehicle and get the unresponsive driver out just in time

By PoliceOne Staff

EUCLID, Ohio — Three officers are credited with saving a man’s life when they arrived on the scene of a truck fire and pulled out the trapped, unresponsive driver.

Officers Jose Alcantara, Adam Beese and Corey Screngi used batons to break the windows on the pickup when they arrived Saturday morning at the scene of the accident.

Zahrod Tolbert, 38, had evidently hit a pole when it crossed the yellow line and scraped through landscaping before coming to a stop, according to WKYC.

One of the officers used a knife to cut open the driver’s seat belt, releasing him from the seat.

Platoon Chief Will Anderson of the Euclid Fire Department says that had the police not arrived when they did, it would likely have been too late to save the man. 

"After watching the video footage, there was a 60-90 second period of time where the cab of the vehicle was not in flames yet. That was where Euclid police went to work and basically saved this individual's life," Anderson said.

Tolbert was released from the hospital after being treated for smoke inhalation. Police said he was under the influence of drugs at the time of the crash, and is charged with reckless operation of a vehicle and OVI. 

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