A Fairfield University student was critically injured after he caught fire when his car went up in flames.
FAIRFIELD, CT (WFSB) -
A Fairfield University student is suffering from life-threatening burns to most of his body after escaping from a burning vehicle in Fairfield on Thursday evening.
Just after 6 p.m., the Fairfield Fire Department received word of a vehicle accident and someone that was on fire in the area of Melville Avenue and Tunxis Hill Park baseball field.
Police said witnesses heard a popping sound before the car caught on fire and then saw a man running from the vehicle.
A fire unit that was returning from a prior call made it to the scene in less than two minutes, and upon arrival saw a Chevrolet Tahoe in the parking lot with thick black smoke and fire shooting from all of the windows. Firefighters said they also saw people helping a man on the ground with burns over most of his body.
Fairfield fire officials said the fire units quickly split into two teams, one assisting with extinguishing the fire and the other to provide immediate medical attention to the man.
The victim, who has been identified as Justin Hervey, 23, a Fairfield University Student, was quickly brought to Bridgeport Hospital's Burn Unit.
Civilians who were nearby watching a little league game saw Hervey and the vehicle on fire, and quickly rushed to his aid.
"The actions of the civilians that helped the burn victim with his injuries were heroic and should be applauded, as they risked their personal safety to help another person in need," Assistant Fire Chief Scott Bisson said.
One of the people who rushed to Hervey's aid also received burns to his hands while trying to extinguish Hervey's clothes and sought medical attention privately, fire officials said.
There were several children present at the field at the time of the fire. Both parents of the children and the school system were notified of the incident.
"Due to the traumatic nature of the incident that many young players witnessed, the parents of the children and the school system have been advised of the situation so that counselors will be available for anyone requesting assistance," Bisson said.
Fire and police investigators stayed on scene for several hours combing through debris at the scene.
The incident remains under investigation by the Fairfield Police Department and the Fairfield Fire Marshal's Office.
Copyright 2012 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Tuesday, June 18 2013 9:23 AM EDT2013-06-18 13:23:30 GMT
A 5-year-old girl set up a lemonade stand across the street from the Westboro Baptist Church compound, and now the group is targeting her. Jayden Sink raised nearly $200 on Friday while she sold lemonadeMore >
A 5-year-old girl set up a lemonade stand across the street from the Westboro Baptist Church compound, and now the group is targeting her.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 6:38 PM EDT2013-06-18 22:38:56 GMT
A convicted Kansas City terrorist was part of a foiled plot to bomb Wall Street, a deputy FBI director told members of Congress Tuesday.Deputy FBI Director Sean Joyce testified Tuesday that the KansasMore >
A convicted Kansas City terrorist was part of a foiled plot to bomb Wall Street, a deputy FBI director told members of Congress Tuesday.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 4:02 PM EDT2013-06-18 20:02:57 GMT
Police are investigating a protest at Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach's home as he said Monday he is prepared to use lethal force if necessary.The KCK Police Department issued a statement MondayMore >
Police are investigating a protest at Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach's home as he said Monday he is prepared to use lethal force if necessary.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 2:30 PM EDT2013-06-18 18:30:12 GMT
The Kansas City Zoo's rock star is sick, so he's getting some TLC behind the scenes."Nikita is a bit under the weather so he's resting in his behind-the-scenes bedroom," said Julie Neemeyer, spokeswomanMore >
The Kansas City Zoo's rock star is sick, so Nikita is getting some TLC behind the scenes. The polar bear apparently has a tummy bug. More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 8:31 PM EDT2013-06-19 00:31:54 GMT
Thieves stole the National Trails Museum's iconic statute over the weekend, and replacing it would cost an estimated $75,000.Museum officials believe copper thieves sought the 6-foot tall bronze statute,More >
Thieves stole the National Trails Museum's iconic statue over the weekend, and replacing it would cost an estimated $75,000.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:47 AM EDT2013-06-18 11:47:53 GMT
Firefighters faced an unexpected danger after flames caused ammunition to go off inside a home that caught fire. Crews were called just before 2 a.m. Tuesday to a home in the 8800 block of WestbrookeMore >
Firefighters faced an unexpected danger after flames caused ammunition to go off inside a home that caught fire.More >