It’s anyone’s worse nightmare: driving into a river and not being able to open the car doors as water slowly fills the car. Even worse – you’re unconscious.
Luckily, one man heard the commotion. Like a comic book superhero, he tore off his shirt and dived in.
When 30-year-old Jason Moss began his usual workout at King’s Court gym near the Passaic River in Nutley, New Jersey, he had no idea that he would be called a hero before the day was out.
When Jason finished his routine, he walked out into the parking lot and heard someone screaming.
“Call the emergency services!” someone yelled.
It took him a moment to realize what was happening, but when he saw the black Mercury Mountaineer he knew he had to do something.
The car was on the opposite side of the river, half-submerged in water. With adrenaline pumping through his body, he acted on his instincts.
He rushed to his car, drove across the bridge, and ripped off his clothes.
Jason whipped on his gym shorts and dove into the murky Passaic River from a nearby boat launch. But he miscalculated the depth of the water, which was only 10 feet deep, and scraped his leg on the rough bottom. But he didn’t have time to worry about how badly he was injured…
Water was filling the car fast, and there was someone inside. When reached it, it was almost completely underwater.
“When I got to the car, I saw that the driver was completely unconscious,” Jason told ABC News. “Her seat belt was undone, and she was just floating inside.”
The windows of the car were closed, and the pressure from the water all around the car meant that Jason had to struggle to tear the door open.
Jason pulled and pulled, but it wouldn’t budge. He was beginning to worry that he wasn’t going to be able to get the door open in time.
Seeing that the rescue team hadn’t arrived yet, he used his foot for leverage and gave one more mighty pull!
“So I looked back to see if any of the rescuers were there yet. They weren’t. But at this point, I knew I definitely had to get that door open or this woman was going to die. She was already unconscious,” he told The Observer, “So I put my foot onto the vehicle and I gave it all I had — everything — and I was able to get it open and pull her out of the vehicle.”
Jason carried the 50-year-old woman to the shoreline, where first responders were waiting.
The woman was in safe hands now, but Jason suddenly had a disconcerting thought. What if there were other people still trapped inside the sinking car?
He was about to swim out again to make sure he hadn’t left anyone behind when the woman came to.
“I was fortunate — just as I got her out, there were the rescuers,” Moss said. “But now we were all worried there might be someone else in the car. I asked them if they wanted me to go back to check, but at that moment, the woman woke up and she said she was by herself,” he told The Observer.
The woman was treated at the scene and then rushed to a hospital, where she was admitted with non life-threatening injuries.
Jason got a tetanus shot for the nasty scrape on his leg but refused treatment at the scene.
“I’ll be back at the gym tomorrow,” he told The Observer. “I’m not a hero — just paying it forward.”
That’s just Jason – but he is a hero. If it wasn’t for his quick thinking, the woman would have drowned!
To see the daring rescue for yourself, watch the video below.
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