CHEYENNE – A Wyoming Highway Patrol trooper rescued a person stuck inside a burning vehicle early Tuesday morning near Wheatland.

At 12:30 a.m. Tuesday, Trooper Samuel Szott was dispatched to handle a crash near mile marker 82 on Interstate 25. 

"Down the embankment was a pickup, and the front end of the pickup was fully engulfed by the time he got there," Lt. Kyle McKay said. "The truck (had) lost control on the icy roads and rolled down the hill."

When Szott arrived, another civilian was also showing up to the scene to help out. Through the smoke, Szott could see a person slumped over the wheel inside the car.

"He was able to get the door open and remove the subject from the vehicle and pull him away from the burning vehicle," McKay said. "(When he showed up), he didn't know there was a fire, and he didn't know there was anybody inside it, either."

The driver was unresponsive when he was pulled out of the car, though by the time emergency medical technicians showed up, he was barely responsive. An ambulance took him to the Platte County Memorial Hospital in Wheatland to treat his injuries.

"Without this trooper's actions and the Good Samaritan's actions, this guy wouldn't be able to have the opportunity to be around for the holidays," McKay said. "By their quick thinking, they've saved this guy's life."

Tom Coulter is the Wyoming Tribune Eagle’s state government reporter. He can be reached at tcoulter@wyomingnews.com or 307-633-3124. Follow him on Twitter at @tomcoulter_.

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