It was a frightening and tense few minutes on Coney Island Avenue in Flatbush on Wednesday morning.
What happened next was shocking and frightening.
For reasons unknown, the elderly man gripped the steering wheel with all his strength, and refused to let go and exit the burning vehicle. The Hatzolah member radioed for backup and assistance, and a passerby stopped to help as the street full of people stood in shock. The vehicle was on fire, and they were unable to break the mans grip from the steering wheel. The Hatzolah member risked his life multiple times as he was literally inside the burning vehicle to try and break the mans grip from the wheel.
Two police officers were on the street as this occurred. One of them tried removing the man from the passenger side of the vehicle. He was unsuccessful, and backed off due to the flames and scare of the vehicle exploding. His female partner told screaming bystanders “I’ve called for the fire department, and there is nothing more I can do”.
A fire extinguisher was brought, and the flames were lightly doused.
The man was eventually removed just the fire department arrived on the scene.
It was believed that the man suffered from some type of neurological emergency as the accident occurred – either before, or immediately after.
He was transported to the hospital by Hatzolah.