(LAKE JAMES) - Two men are being credited by the Steuben County Sheriffs Department with saving the life of a driver whose car crashed on Bayview Road Wednesday afternoon and then burst into flames. The Sheriffs Department says a car driven by 31-year-old Luke Kenwick of Middlebury was heading west at about 3:30pm when it went off the road in the area of Lane 310 at Lake James and struck a tree which caused heavy front end damage to the vehicle.
Steuben County residents Larry Bassett and Bryan Sorgen arrived at the accident scene a short time later and tried to help Kenwick who was still in the car. Sorgen is a Fort Wayne firefighter who was off duty at the time. He broke a window in the vehicle to gain access to Kenwick who appeared to be stuck. Bassett and Sorgen then noticed the temperature rising in the vehicle. Kenwick was pulled from the car. The vehicle then burst into flames in the engine compartment. Kenwick was pulled to safety and the Sheriffs Department stated in a news release that the actions of Bassett and Sorgen most likely prevented more serious injuries and possibly saved a life. Kenwick was taken to Parkview Regional Medical Center. The Sheriffs Department says alcohol is believed to be a factor in the crash.
Assisting the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office were Indiana Conservation Officers, Steuben County E.M.S., the Angola Fire Department and Steuben County Communications.