Two Teens on Spring Break Pull Victims Out of Fiery Jaguar Crash on Palm Coast Parkway
FlaglerLive | April 3, 2012
Carlos Adams, 42, is in critical condition, and Tracy Lopez, 44, is in serious condition following a single-car wreck on Palm Coast Parkway early Tuesday morning.
Adams was driving a 2002 Jaguar X-Type, heading west on the parkway, just past Palm Harbor Drive. Lopez was in the passenger seat. For unknown reasons, according to a Florida Highway Patrol report, Adams lost control of the Jaguar.
The car began to rotate counterclockwise as it swerved into the thickly wooded median–actually, a park–where the front right area of the car struck a tree, then another, then caught fire. The crash took place a little before 1 a.m.
Tuesday afternoon, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office revealed that two teen-agers on spring break, Cody Decker, 17, and Luke Vaughn, also 17, of Dewitt, Mich., were responsible for pulling Adams and Lopez out of the burning car. They told deputies they were at the entrance of Canopy Walk, the condo complex nearby, just before 1 a.m. when they saw a vehicle speed past them then heard a crash and saw the Jaguar on fire.
The two teens then ran to the scene and saw Adams and Lopez trapped in the car. “Within seconds,” the sheriff’s release states, “one of the teens broke the glass on the vehicle and bent the door frame down in order to remove the couple before emergency crews could get to the scene. Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies who arrived first said the vehicle had struck two trees and separated into almost two pieces with the engine coming to rest on Palm Coast Parkway. The vehicle itself landed in the median and caught two trees on fire.”
Adams and Lopez, who were both wearing seat belts, were taken to Halifax hospital in Daytona Beach. The FHP hasn’t yet determined whether alcohol was a factor. The Jaguar was removed from the scene by John’s Towing later in the early morning.
“These actions of these teens may have saved the lives of this couple,” said Flagler County Sheriff Don Fleming. “They stayed calm, acted quickly and removed the victms and themsleves from danger. These young men deserve our thanks and recognition.”
Fleming will be recognizing the two teens for their actions during a 10 a.m. ceremony Thursday at the Palm Coast VFW on North Old Kings Road in Palm Coast. Palm Coast Fire Chief Mike Beadle will be there on behalf of the city fire department.