By Jim Armstrong, WBZ-TV

FALL RIVER (CBS) – Jesse Gomes was driving to work early Monday morning, when he turned the corner on an off-ramp to Route 24 in Fall River and couldn’t believe his eyes.

“I didn’t even know it was a truck at first,” he explains. “The whole back of the tanker was already in flames.”

Gomes and another driver pulled over and ran to the side of the road. Inside, they could see the trapped body of the female truck driver.

“The truck was all mangled from my vantage point so I couldn’t see if the person who was in it was ejected,” he explains. “You just could see a mess.”

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Gomes says he and the other passerby started shouting to see if the driver could respond. As the flames inched closer to the cab, they screamed to the woman to tell them what was in her tanker.

“And she screamed out, ‘Gas!'” Gomes says.  And at that point, the other man who had been standing next to him disappeared.

“When she said gas, he was gone,” Gomes explains. “I just remember when she said gas I was like, we gotta get her out of there. And I looked and he was nowhere to be found.”

So, he ran down the hill alone and unbuckled the driver, 46-year-old Lisa Korch of Connecticut, and pulled her to safety, with 11,000 gallons of gasoline ready to burst into flames.

Now that he’s had time to think about it, Gomes says he knew he did the right thing, even if he can’t believe it all happened.

“I wouldn’t be able to just stand there and watch somebody burn,” he explains.  “When I saw her move then the right thing to do was to get her out.”


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