Man Pulled to Safety from Vehicle Engulfed with Flames

Members of the Wilton Fire and Police Departments help rescue a Norwalk man from a burning vehicle.


A Wilton Police Sergeant and a Wilton Firefighter pulled a 52-year-old Norwalk man to safety after he was trapped in his burning vehicle following a one-car accident on Hurlbutt Street Tuesday evening.

"Being one of the police officers on scene shortly after the driver was pulled from his car, I can tell you that this was a very dangerous situation for all of our emergency services employees who were on scene and some who put their own safety in jeopardy as they struggled to pull the driver from the burning car," said Police Chief Michael Lombardo. 

According to a press release sent out by the Wilton Police Department, officers responded to the report of a car in the woods off Hurlbutt Street, near Maplewood Road, at 6:20 p.m. Upon arrival, officers saw the driver, Willie Singleton, was trapped in his vehicle, which was on fire.

"Shortly after the call, Sergeant Thomas Tunney arrived on scene and attempted to remove the operator from the vehicle but was unable due to the intense heat," the press release says.

Officers Robert Cipolla and Anna Tornello then arrived on scene, providing fire extinguishers to attempt to extinguish the fire.

"The flames continued to intensify," the release says. "However, Sgt. Tunney remained inches from the vehicle, attempting to suppress the fire with fire extinguishers and gain access to the operator."

The Wilton Fire Department then arrived on scene and attempted to put out the fire with extinguishers while deployed fire hoses.

"Firefighter Bill Wilson went to Sgt. Tunney's location in the wooded area and both reached into the fire-engulfed vehicle and pulled the operator from the vehicle," the release says. Singleton was then taken to a safe area so he could be treated by EMS personnel.

Singleton was taken to Norwalk Hospital initially but was moved to the Bridgeport Hospital Burn Unit, according to the release.

The accident remains under investigation.  


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