Police: Gas station crash could have been worse

November 9, 2010 8:11:53 PM PST
A motorist plowed into a Chester County gas station after losing control of his car, police say.

Surveillance video captured the impact which uprooted the gas pump sending a ball of fire into the air Monday night. The driver of the Toyota Camry, 18-year-old Emmanuel Wolo of Southwest Philadelphia was knocked unconscious.

"And it caught on fire. They had to take me out of the car; I didn't even know what was going on," Wolo said.

The video shows the gas station ownerKenwar Narula running out to shut off power to the pumps and then rushing to put out the flames with a fire extinguisher.

"The flame was too big for me to go close to close to it, I gave up," Narula said.

As Narula tried frantically to put out the flames, a witness named Don Culp watched the accident. He then got out of his Ford F150, ran across the street, and tried to help the injured victim.

"He kind of opened the door, kind of fell out, staggered to his feet and got like 20 feet from his car," Culp said.

Culp says the victim, Emanuele Wolo of Philadelphia, seemed to be in shock. Culp grabbed him and pulled him to safety.

Wolo says he was on his way home from class at West Chester University travelling southbound on the right lane on Rt. 202 near Rt. 926 when a car on the left lane suddenly careened into him sending his car spinning sideways into the gas pump.

Wolo had to be hospitalized for injuries to his head, neck and chest, but is just grateful that Don Culp was there to help him:

"I just want to tell him thanks cause if it wasn't for him, it would have been a different story. So, yeah, I wouldn't be here right now," Wolo said.

So far, no one's been charged.

Authorities believe the whole thing could have been a lot worse, if not for the quick thinking of the Good Samaritan and the gas station owner.


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