ALTADENA ( — California Highway Patrol officers shared their story with CBS2 of how they saved a driver who was trapped after a crash.

CHP officers Steve Lutzke and Brandon Matthews were on a routine patrol early on Sunday morning, when they received a call about an overturned van on the westbound 210-Freeway, on the 118 transition.

The driver had lost control, and had rolled down an embankment.

Responding to the call, the officers arrived in the nick of time.

Lutzke and Matthews assisted other first responders on scene in an effort to rescue the trapped driver.

The driver’s sister made it out of the van, and watched as officers and paramedics pushed the van up on its side to get to the driver.

“It was tiring, but I think everybody worked as a team,” officer Lutzke said. “We all just kind of kept telling each other ‘push, push’, and we kept holding it up as long as we possibly could.”

The first responders held the van up towards its side for three minutes as a paramedic crawled underneath to free the driver.

“It was heavy, I’m not going to lie,” officer Matthews said. “So it took some strength. So at that point, not only are we concerned about the driver’s safety, we’re having to hold it up and make sure it doesn’t rock back and crush him as well.”

The effort paid off, as the driver was pulled out from the van and was taken to a local hospital.

“It’s nice to go out there and be able to assist somebody when they’re in need like that,” Lutzke said.

Matthews echoed his partner’s sentiments about being able to help someone in need.

“She was definitely in a tough situation. So to be able to help somebody, it really makes you feel good.”


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