VANDALIA, Ohio (WDTN) – A Vandalia police officer is being honored for his heroism. While off duty, he administered emergency medical care at the scene of a head-on crash.
Last October, Sergeant Doug Nagel was in street clothes, heading to his child’s soccer game.
He didn’t expect to come across a head on collision at the intersection of Frederick Pike and US-40, but he was ready.
One person was lying unconscious in the street, while another was trapped in the car, covered in blood.
“The dangerous part that I saw was some white smoke pouring out from under the hood, which from my experience typically equates to an electrical fire which goes pretty quick,” he said.
A friend who happened to be a state trooper also happened across the crash, and emergency crews were on their way.
But the people in the car were injured and the clock was ticking.
“A minute’s going to seem like 10, 10 is going to seem like an hour,” said Sgt. Nagel.
The man in the car was trapped; Sgt. Nagel had to break the seat in order to free him.
“I just used my body weight and I get on top of the seat. Mind you, it’s two large guys in a confined space, it was a little hard. I tried to use my body weight to force that mechanism to break that locks the seat in place,” he said.
For his actions that day, the Vandalia Fire Chief nominated Sergeant Nagel for the Knights of Columbus Blue Coat Award, given to first responders who display courage and provide exemplary service.
“It’s not why I do my job, for awards. It is humbling to get them, it’s nice, but it’s not why I do what I do,” he said.
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