The Whitefield FD held its annual Christmas Dinner at Tucker’s Restaurant on December 20. Assistant Chief Ross Ables, Lieutenant Josh Clark, Safety Officer Bob Mosley, and firefighters Paul Drake and Josh West received Courage and Lifesaving Awards for the following incident on Willingham Road in March.
“On March 19, 2013 at 15:52 hours, a teenage male and female were traveling along Willingham Road when the vehicle they were in ran off the side of the road, struck a concrete culvert pipe, overturned and burst into flames.
The Whitefield Fire Department was dispatched to 228 Willingham Road for the motor vehicle accident and was advised of the reported rollover, vehicle fire and entrapment. Assistant Chief Ross Ables, Safety Officer Bob Mosley, and firefighters Paul Drake and Josh West responded from their places of employment to the fire station to retrieve a rescue truck and fire engine.
While firefighters were enroute to the scene, a nearby resident who heard the crash and saw flames grabbed a five gallon bucket of water to douse the flames, but it was not enough to put out the flames that continued to build. He and a passing motorist then pulled the male occupant from the vehicle but were unable to remove the female occupant.
Firefighters arrived to the scene at 15:57 hours, and observed a female victim trapped inside the burning vehicle. Firefighters Paul Drake and Josh West immediately worked to extinguish the vehicle fire while Lieutenant Josh Clark and Safety Officer Bob Mosley began extrication of the passenger door for patient removal.
Williamston EMS summoned LifeFlight helicopter to the scene to transport the female burn victim, requiring Assistant Chief Ables to secure a landing zone.
By 16:20 hours, the female burn victim had been loaded into the awaiting helicopter and transported to a local hospital for treatment of her burns and injuries, and the male occupant transported to a local hospital by Williamston EMS.
The swift and heroic actions of the citizens and these firefighters directly resulted in two teenage lives saved. While the male has recovered from his injuries, the female continues to receive treatment for her injuries.”