David Michael McCartney helped to rescue Elizabeth A. Testerman from burning, Atlanta, Indiana, January 9, 2006. Testerman, 54, was the driver of a sport utility vehicle that left the roadway, went down an embankment, and struck a concrete culvert. The vehicle came to rest partially on its passenger side and caught fire in its engine compartment. Flames grew and entered the vehicle at its floorboard, burning Testerman. McCartney, 21, factory worker, had been following Testerman and witnessed the accident. He stopped at the scene and approached the burning vehicle from the front. Despite four-foot flames on the front of the vehicle, McCartney kicked in the remaining portion of the windshield, then reached inside and cut one of the straps of Testerman’s safety belt. Another motorist who had responded reached through the broken-out window of the driver’s door and cut the other strap. McCartney and the other motorist then pulled Testerman through the windshield and, joined by a third man, carried her to safety. Flames soon engulfed the vehicle and compromised its fuel tank. Testerman required hospitalization for treatment of second-degree burns and other injuries.
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