Hero holds dying driver’s hand in crash wreckage and tells him ‘your daughter is safe’

A selfless man who bravely fought to save the victims of a horror crash on the M62 held a dying driver’s hand as other rescuers saved his daughter from the burning wreckage. Steve Wroe was one of the witnesses who desperately tried to help after the crash between a car and an HGV near Goole last Wednesday, reports Hull Live.

Tragically, two men died in the collision. Steve has spoken out to make sure one victim’s family knew that the man who died was aware his daughter was safe before he passed away. The 59-year-old from Huddersfield was traveling on the M62 on Wednesday morning when he came across the accident.

He said he and a group of men scrambled to save a teenage girl from an HGV engulfed in flames, and a man, thought to be her father, who was in the driver’s seat. Despite Steve’s best efforts, he could not free the man. But he stayed with him, holding the man’s hand and making sure he knew that his daughter was safe and she had been rescued, before he died at the scene.

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The rescuer told Hull Live: “I tried my hardest and I feel like I’ve failed the family because I couldn’t do more. I just really need his family to know that the last words he heard were that we saved his daughter and she was safe. I had hold of his hand and kept telling him I was sorry right until his final moments.”

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Steve recalls seeing the accident ahead, before he then ran down the slip road and set out to rescue those involved. He was joined by three other men who were attempting to force open the damaged door of the HGV involved and smashed the passenger window, reports Yorkshire Live.

Steve Wroe

The group used a fire extinguisher to put out the flames but it was holding them back. Steve held the man’s hand as it became clear he was unable to be rescued. Steve let the man know that his daughter had been freed and was safe, to which it was clear the man had understood.

Steve stayed with the victim right until the last moment and he wants the family to know he was not alone. Steve said: “It reached a point where I told him that I had to go and he passed in a matter of seconds afterwards. He wasn’t suffering for a long time and we made sure to stay with him as long as possible.

“The only other option would have been to get in the cabin with him, but there was just so much fire and smoke. It wasn’t safe to do anything more and I had to think about my own family in that moment as well.

“I need to say to the other guys that they were helping, they were just 10 out of 10 and true heroes. I can only hope the girl is doing OK.”

The crash, which happened at around 9.50am on April 6 at Goole, claimed the lives of two men – the 53-year-old driving the lorry and a 54-year-old man driving a car. The 15-year-old girl remains in hospital in serious condition, according to the latest reports from Humberside Police.

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Oliver North, Steve Wroe’s employer, said: “I went straight to the hospital to pick Steve up myself when I heard what happened. His kit was completely charred and his face was still covered in soot. Steve was coughing and choking; he’d been on oxygen for two hours after the incident.We think he is an absolute hero and a truly unbelievable man.

“The thing is, Steve would never have usually been down that way as he is mainly based in Brighouse. Our firm is building ambulances for Ukraine at the moment and he was driving parts down to our Goole factory.

“He is so passionate about saving lives that he wanted to get involved in the project in any way he could, that’s just who he is. It is no surprise that he didn’t hesitate to run down that slip road and do all he could to help those victims.”

His company have said that Steve will be back in work on Monday, at his own request.


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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