(KNX 1070) — A Caltrans employee risked his own life to save a pregnant woman from a fiery crash.

“I was driving our loader up the shoulder of the 14 Freeway to a job site and heard a big crash on the back-end of the loader,” recalls Mark Johnson. “I was rear-ended by a car and by the time I got out of the loader, the car was pretty well inflamed.”

Johnson bumped his head when the car crashed into his rig, according to Diane Thompson of KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO, but he managed to exit his car as quickly as he could since he saw flames and black smoke

“The inside of the car was full of smoke,” he said. “And I saw a little bit of movement at the bottom of the window. Ended up it was an arm, moving back and forth, so I tried to get the door open and it took a couple of tries.”

Johnson managed to get the door of the other vehicle open and helped the female motorist out of the car.

“She looked dazed. You know, she wasn’t saying anything. I’m sure she was in shock,” he said. “She told a truck driver that had pulled over that she had fallen asleep.”

It turned out the driver was pregnant.

“I think I just reacted. I really didn’t think anyone was doing to be alive. They hit so hard. I was surprised when I saw movement in there,” he said.

In his 30 years with Caltrans, Thompson reports that this was the fourth time Johnson had been hit.

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