Driver helps trapped couple after crash

Updated Jul 24, 2013
Robert PhillipsRobert Phillips

Robert Phillips of Cleburne, Texas, has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for his involvement in helping an elderly couple escape their vehicle after crashing in bad weather.

Phillips is an owner-operator leased to American Central Transport out of Liberty, Mo. On the afternoon of June 5, he was driving on Highway 72 near Walnut, Miss., in bad rain, when the vehicle in front of him flipped and crashed into a ditch.

The car came to a rest upside down, and an elderly couple were dangling from their seatbelts. Phillips did a u-turn and returned to the scene to help a few others who’d stopped to pull the man out of th ecar. His wife, however, was unresponsive.

Phillips, a former volunteer firefighter, told others the woman should not be moved until internal injuries had been assessed. When emergency responders arrived, Phillips helped them remove the woman from the vehicle. He stayed on the scene until the situation had been handled.

“I just did what any normal human should have done. It was a group effort, although I am still amazed that no one else from the highway stopped to help — there were lots of vehicles whizzing by. I guess I’m just grateful that the couple is alright,” Phillips says.

Phillips has been given a lapel pin, certificate and patch.