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Citizens Rush To Rescue Man Buried After Semi Hauling Sand Tips

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BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – A semi hauling sand tipped over, burying two cars in Boulder Friday evening. Witnesses rushed in to help rescue those trapped and now police want to track down the good Samaritans to thank them.

The semi tipped on Baseline Road near Foothills Parkway. It took hours for the road to reopen during the accident cleanup. The cause of the accident is still being investigated.

Remnants of sand on Baseline Road on Saturday showed how large of an area that was covered. Thanks to what witnesses say was a phenomenal rescue, the man who was buried and the two others injured are expected to fully recover.

“We immediately knew something happened. The house shook, there was breaking glass,” said Sarah Cannon, who heard the crash from her home.

The driver of the semi lost control turning off Foothills Parkway onto Baseline Road.

“I look up and I see this truck going really fast, flying over the median,” said Evan Holloway, whose vehicle was hit by the semi.

Holloway and his 3-year-old son were stopped at the light when the truck spilled over and hit them, plowing their car into two other vehicles and burying a driver underneath a truckload of sand.

(credit: Boulder Police)

(credit: Boulder Police)

“The first Boulder police officers who arrived at the scene rushed to dig the trapped driver out of the car, using their hands,” Kim Kobel with Boulder police said. “Firefighters from Boulder Fire-Rescue and officers from other law enforcement agencies also used their hands to remove the sand. Several citizens who witnessed the accident stopped to help, some of them bringing shovels and buckets and some of them also digging with their hands to remove the sand and rescue the driver.”

“I was really impressed by the neighbors. It seemed like, I jetted out of the car, I grabbed my son, and instantly I saw people everywhere,” Holloway said.

Neighbors, drivers and passersby went into immediate action.

“It was completely terrifying, the idea of being buried,” Cannon said.

(credit: Boulder Police)

(credit: Boulder Police)

They worked feverishly to dig the buried car from the heavy sand.

“He said, ‘What can i do?’ And I said, ‘Do you have a shovel?’ And he said, ‘Yeah.’ And he went up in the top of his carrier he had on his car and he grabbed a shovel and he ran right over,” Cannon said.

“Firefighters extricated the trapped driver by cutting the roof and door off of the car,” Kobel said.

Cannon said the swift team rescue is one she’ll never forget.

“When the person finally was pulled from the car people clapped and cheered because everyone was so relieved. So it was very touching,” Cannon said. “So a big thank you goes to everyone who responded to that.”

Boulder Fire-Rescue had five engine crews on scene, 15 firefighters and several commanders directing the very technical rescue.

“The Boulder Police Department and Boulder Fire-Rescue wish to thank the citizens and officers from other agencies who stopped to help during the rescue,” Kobel said.

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