Guy Knudsen, a driver for ABF Freight System of Fort Smith, Ark., has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for assisting a woman at an accident scene.
On Jan. 7, 2011, Knudsen was driving on westbound on Interstate 80 east of Reno, Nev., when he came around a blind curve in a narrow canyon. Blocking the road was an upside-down car with no lights. He swerved but could not avoid hitting it.
As Knudsen asked his dispatcher to call 911 and was getting out of his truck, another truck approached the scene, and also hit the vehicle. Together, Knudsen and this truck driver attempted to prevent traffic from further hitting the wreck, requiring both to leap over a barrier just to keep from being hit themselves.
Knudsen couldn’t find passengers in or near the upside-down car. He scrambled to safety as three other vehicles smashed into the upside-down car.
Knudsen figured the driver of the original vehicle must have been ejected from the car prior to the collisions; however, finding this person in the low visibility and freezing fog proved difficult. He injured himself and risked his own life by jumping over a barricade and sliding down a steep embankment to the eastbound lanes.
There, he found a dazed and confused woman with a head injury walking in circles near the edge of the freeway. He moved her to safety as the ambulance and police zoomed past them on their way to the westbound lanes located above. Eventually, Knudsen got the disoriented woman to stay in place while he climbed back up the embankment to notify the authorities where she could be found.