BRIGHAM CITY -- Two Top of Utah men are being described by the Utah Highway Patrol as heroes for helping rescue a woman whose car overturned Monday in a water filled ditch on Interstate 15 near Brigham City.
Jason Navarro of Logan and Bob Nicholson of Ogden helped off-duty Trooper Alex Williams save the life of Heidi Orosco 39, of Ogden, following a single-vehicle rollover Monday around 8 a.m.
"We are grateful for people doing the right thing at the right time," Lt. Lee Perry of the UHP said Wednesday.
Orosco was traveling north on I-15 in a 2010 Dodge Caliber when her vehicle drifted off the left side of the road into the median and then over-corrected several times, according to a UHP report. The vehicle then slid off the right side of the highway, down an embankment and rolled 1 1/2 times, and came to rest upside down in a ditch.
Navarro was driving to his job as an installer for Pioneer Cable when he saw the accident happen. The crash was also spotted by Nicholson, who was traveling in another vehicle. Both men pulled their vehicles over to render aid.
Nicholson phoned 911 and remained on the line with emergency dispatchers while Navarro ran to Orosco's vehicle.
Navarro said he found Orosco seatbelted in the driver's seat of the car that was upside down and filling up with water.
"She was pinned between the driver's side door and the steering wheel," he told the Standard-Examiner on Thursday.
Orosco screamed for Navarro to free her from the vehicle. Navarro rushed back to his vehicle to retrieve a knife to cut away the seatbelt.
Navarro said while heading back to Orosco's car he flagged down Williams' patrol vehicle.
Williams used the knife to cut away the seatbelt holding Orosco while Navarro bailed water from the car. Nicholson remained on the phone with emergency dispatchers, Navarro said.
The rescuers were able to keep Orosco's head above water until emergency medical personnel arrived, states a UHP report. She went from being totally unresponsive to communicating with medical responders prior to being transported from the accident scene, the report says.
Orosco was transported by ambulance to Brigham City Community Hospital and then airlifted to Ogden Regional Medical Center for treatment of a severe spinal injury.
Navarro said he is glad he could help Orosco and doesn't consider himself a hero. "At a time like that, you just think of your wife or your sister (being involved in an accident) and try to help," he said. "It was amazing how many people (driving on I-15) saw it and didn't stop to help."
Nicholson and Williams couldn't be reached for comment.
Williams will be nominated for a life saving medal, Perry said.