Officers awarded for saving man trapped in water-filled car - WNEM TV 5

Officers awarded for saving man trapped in water-filled car

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Source: Bay County Sheriff's Office Source: Bay County Sheriff's Office
BAY COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Authorities say the quick actions of two Mid-Michigan police officers help save the life of a man trapped in a submerged car. 

It happened about 3:27 a.m. on Dec. 23, 2017, near North Huron Road.

Investigators said 57-year-old Thomas Charles Olson drove his 2004 Honda Civic over the seawall at Linwood Beach Marina. His vehicle crashed into the frozen canal of the Saginaw Bay and went through the ice.

When Sgt. Duchene and Deputy Dzurka with the Bay County Sheriff’s Office arrived on scene, they saw the Civic partially sticking out of the water and sinking under the ice.

“Deputy Dzurka quickly retrieved a pry bar, rope, and blanket from his patrol vehicle as Sgt Duchene approached the car. He jumped from the seawall onto the trunk of the Civic,” the sheriff’s office wrote on Facebook.

Officials said that’s when Dzurka tossed Duchene the pry bar which he used to smash in the rear window. The driver was pinned inside the vehicle.

“He used the rope to pull the male out of the vehicle which was partially filled with water. He pulled him onto the trunk and then wrapped him in the blanket until firefighters could arrive with a ladder,” the sheriff’s office wrote.

When firefighters arrived, they were able to help Dzurka and Duchene get the driver off the vehicle and onto land.

Olson was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Authorities did not believe alcohol was a factor in the crash. 

“Without the quick response time and team work there could have been a tragic ending to this story,” the sheriff’s office wrote.

Both Dzurka and Duchene were presented Tuesday with a Bay County Sheriff's Office Life Saver Award for their actions. 

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