Local News

Bystander ‘heroes’ rescue mother and children from fiery car crash in Charlton

Police say five people stopped to help a mother and her two young children Monday after her SUV rolled over and caught fire.

Charlton police are commending five bystanders who they say rescued a mother and her two young children from a fiery car crash on Monday.

The crash happened a little before 6:40 p.m. near 338 Worcester Rd., which is part of Route 20, police said in a Facebook post Tuesday. When police arrived, they found that an SUV had rolled over with the driver and her two children inside.

By the time police got to the scene, bystanders were already helping the family escape the SUV, police said. They said five people — Russel Jennings, Mireya Wattson, Agata Lajoie, Alysa Hanson, and one unnamed person — were “instrumental” in rescuing the family.


“Everyday we rely on the support of the citizens within the general public, but incidents like this remind us all of what a great community we live in,” police wrote.

What happened

The crash was a result of the SUV hydroplaning after heavy rain hit the area earlier that day, WCVB reported. The boys were four and five years old.

Jennings told the news station the crash happened about 20 to 30 seconds before he drove past the scene. One of the SUV’s doors was jammed, but he was able to open it, he said. He then pulled one boy out of the vehicle and took him to safety.

Lajoie told WCVB that another woman arrived at the scene before she did.

“They were screaming. The woman who got there first, she was holding them. I picked up the second boy with another person who came to help us,” she said. “We were trying to comfort them because they were scared. They were very scared.”

As fire began to take over the SUV, Jennings and another man rescued the mother using a blanket, he told the news station.

The mother and her children are expected to survive, WCVB reported.

“These people that came out and stopped immediately and went into action without thinking — they were the real heroes on this day,” Charlton Police Officer Daniel Hanks told the news station.


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