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Cst. Dave Wright was on routine patrol when he was dispatched to the report of a collision, but what he was faced with when he arrived was far from routine. It was a horrific car crash and the vehicle was on fire, crumpled around a tree. The front hood was buckled and the entire front end of the vehicle was on fire. The vehicle had two occupants, one in the driver’s seat and one in the front passenger’s seat. Both the driver and passenger were trapped.

Cst. Wright approached the driver’s side of the vehicle and saw that a citizen was trying to free the unconscious driver. Despite the heat and the danger involved, he used his pocket knife to cut the driver’s safety harnesses. After several attempts, he was successful in freeing the driver. As he was dragging the driver away from the vehicle, with the assistance of another citizen, there was an explosion. Cst. Wright and the citizen continued to drag the driver across the eastbound lanes to a grassy boulevard, where other citizens were lending a hand.

Then, Cst. Wright went back. He tried desperately to free the passenger, who was unconscious and bleeding profusely. He made several attempts, but had to retreat due to the twisted metal and yet another explosion. The Oshawa Fire Department arrived on scene and extinguished the flames; however, the badly injured passenger succumbed to his injuries. The driver was eventually charged with impaired operation causing death.
Without the heroic efforts of Cst. Dave Wright, putting his life in danger, facing the smoke, heat and flames, there could have been two deaths that day.

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