Cop Recused Man In Wheelchair Who Was Stuck In Tracks, Within Seconds Of Speeding Train

Cop Recused Man In Wheelchair Who Was Stuck In Tracks, Within Seconds Of Speeding Train

Officer Erika Urrea managed to pull the 66-year-old away from an oncoming train just moments before it would have crushed both of them.

Image Source: YouTube/Lodi Police Department

A police officer from California is being lauded for her bravery and swift response to seeing a man in a wheelchair stuck on a railway track. Officer Erika Urrea pulled the 66-year-old away from an oncoming train just moments before it would have crushed both of them. The heroic rescue, that seemed to be straight out of a movie, was captured by Urrea's bodycam according to a news release from her department in Lodi, near Sacramento. The footage, that lasted about 45 seconds, shows Urrea jumping out of her car as the railroad crossing arms begin to come down. She darts towards the man, who seemed to be stuck on the tracks, and yanks him out from his chair as the train barrels past them. 


The incident happened on the morning of August 12, at around 8:44 a.m. PT, according to NBC News. Lodi police officer was patrolling the Central Valley community alongside Sergeant Steve Maynard when they noticed the elderly man in his wheelchair. He seemed to be stuck on the tracks as the crossing guards continued to come down signaling the arrival of a train. "As the incident happened very quickly we believe the chair wheel was stuck in the groove between the railroad track and the cement," said Lt. Michael Manetti. Urrea was reportedly driving at the time and had barely spotted the man out of the corner of her eye. "So I happen to kind of look to the side and notice there was a man in a wheelchair, and he seemed to be almost wiggling, like he was stuck," recalled the 36-year-old while speaking with NBC Nightly News on Thursday. 


Without wasting a moment, she immediately rushed towards the man stuck on Lodi Avenue leaving her squad car behind. "Can you get up?" the officer could be held asking the elderly on the bodycam video. As the train's horn kept getting louder with its increasing proximity, Urrea knew this was a matter of life and death. Instead of giving up on the pedestrian, she quickly unbuckled him from his seat, grabbed his torso, and yanked him out of the chair. "Get up, get up, get up, get up, get up!" she could be heard screaming in the video. The two fell on the ground as the Union Pacific train blazed past, smashing the wheelchair feet away. "I need an ambulance now!" the officer could be heard yelling as the train continued to speed past them in the background. 


The moment was terrifying, to say the least, but when Urrea was asked about it, she said there was not enough time at that moment to be afraid. However, she did admit having a hard time watching the video 2 hours later. "I was trying to figure out 'OK, where's the train? I don't know how fast the train is going. How much time do I have?' But my goal was, 'I need to get him off the tracks,'" said the brave officer. "Honestly, it seems like I'm watching someone else's video. It's very surreal ... it was scary to watch." The man was immediately taken to a hospital where he remains in stable condition. 


The single mom also said she had undergone no prior training for dealing with a speeding train. "No, nothing this specific at least," she said, revealing how she would never forget the incident. "The most memorable ... probably the scariest incident that I've been involved with so far." Her supervisors were quick to praise her heroic actions. "We are very proud of Officer Urrea and her heroic actions. Thanks to her awareness and quick action she was able to save the man’s life at great personal risk to herself. This is another shining example of the brave actions the men and women of law enforcement exhibit every day," said Lodi police Captain David Griffin. Urrea didn't think of herself as a hero of any sort and said that anyone in her positive would have done the same.


"I honestly don't think I did anything special. I know all the people that I work with would have done the same thing," said the modest officer. "I just did what I felt that anybody in my situation would have done and something that I felt like, if that was my family member or friend that was stuck, I would want someone to come out and help." Check out the video of the dramatic rescue:


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