A Good Samaritan and a Plainville police officer pulled a woman from a burning car just before a small explosion.
Maureen Jahne, 54, of Southington, was rescued from her burning car around 6:30 Friday morning on Interstate 84 in Plainville. She was brought to Hartford Hospital and then transferred to the burn unit at Bridgeport Hospital.
Kevin Bleau, 40, of Southingon, was driving to work when he noticed Jahne's car off the road. The former volunteer firefighter stopped and quickly realized the front of her car was on fire.
"Once I saw her in there, the only thing I could think of was just getting her out," said Bleau. "She was trapped in the car, banging on the window."
Bleau smashed her window and then managed to get her door open. The flames were already inside the cabin and the heat was so intense that Bleau suffered minor burns to his face and wrist.
"I noticed her legs were already on fire. She had fire on her arm and as I was trying to get her out I patted that out trying to do whatever I could. Once we got the seat belt off, she kind of fell out of the car," Bleau said.
That's when Officer Brian Cybulski, 32, of the Plainville police department, arrived on the scene to help out.
"We both dragged her away from the car just in time before there was a small explosion right near where she was lying," said Officer Cybulski.
"At that point, we looked over and the car was just fully involved," said Bleau.
Jahne told rescuers she'd been hit and run off the road by another car. She drove over a metal guardrail and crashed into a tree before the car caught fire, according to state police.
"I'm just glad I was there to help and I hope she's doing okay and makes a speedy recovery," said Bleau.
"We are so thankful to everyone who helped her today," Jahne's family said in a statement released Friday afternoon. "There are no words to describe how we feel about the officer and Good Samaritan who risked their lives to save our beloved Maureen. We are so, so grateful."
Police are investigating and ask any witnesses to call State Police Troop H at 860-534-1000.