Prison guard pulls 3 people from burning car

Three people were pulled from this burning car in Acushnet. (Photo: Acushnet Fire & EMS Department)

ACUSHNET, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts prison guard who pulled three people from a burning car shortly before it became engulfed says he didn’t have time to think of his own safety.

Rui Gouveia, of Fairhaven, was on his way to the state prison in Bridgewater, where he works as a correctional officer, on Tuesday night when a car passed him and crashed.

He tells The Standard-Times the crash was so severe that he thought the vehicle’s occupants were dead.

He says he acted on instinct, afraid of an explosion, and pulled the vehicle’s occupants through an open window because the doors were locked. The car burst into flames seconds later.

The car’s occupants were ages 18, 19 and 20. Acushnet Fire Chief Kevin Gallagher says there is no doubt that the 41-year-old Gouveia saved three lives.

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