A News On 6 storm tracker and his ride along partner went from tracking storms to rescuing someone. Storm Tracker Von Castor caught some of the action on camera and said he still can't believe what happened.
Two of our storm trackers were out on assignment during a surge of storms Friday night when they rolled up on an accident. They said it comes with the territory, but their priority quickly switched from chasing severe weather to saving someone's life.
Von Castor and Joel Smith drove by a guard rail in the road and through a cloud of dust Friday night.
"We're like, 'What just happened?’'" Smith said.
The trackers pulled onto the shoulder at 201st and Highway 75 where they discovered a car covered in smoke at the bottom of a creek.
"My initial thought was, 'I've got to get to that guy as soon as I can,'" Smith said.
"We had to navigate the rocks and, as soon as we get down there, Joel says, 'I need a hammer,'" Castor said.
Luckily for Smith, who is a storm tracker in training, is also a former EMT, firefighter and currently works in law enforcement.
"Training kind of kicks in," Smith said.
Smith began looking for overhead obstructions, surveying the crash zone, making sure the car was stable and not leaking gas.
"It was amazing,” Castor said. “Amazing to watch how he just went into action.”
Smith said he ran to the driver to ask questions and discovered he was responsive, which was a good sign for Smith. First, he used a pry bar to begin removing the windshield. That's before construction workers rolled up with a sawzall.
Then, an ATF agent, an OSBI agent and then nurse after nurse appeared on scene. They are happened to be passing through.
"Very thankful to everybody that stopped,” Smith said. “I don't think it could go any smoother really.”
"It was a God thing because he should not have survived that crash," Castor said.
Castor said he thought Friday he was going to be the teacher.
"Uh uh, this was meant to be,” Castor said. “He taught me something. This day was not meant for me to be storm chasing. We were meant to be there.”
Emergency vehicles picked up where they left off. Castor and Smith continued on tracking storms but said they hope to also check in with the driver at some point in the future.