Joseph Wiggins, a driver for Phillip Williams & Sons out of Plant City, Fla., has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for saving a man in cardiac arrest.
On the morning of May 11, 2015, Wiggins was driving north on I-95 outside of St. Augustine when traffic stopped completely due to an earlier fatality accident. More than two hours passed, and Wiggins was parked next to another tractor-trailer.
He saw the passenger in the other truck collapse and fall forward, then noticed the driver of the truck shaking him in a panic. Wiggins jumped out of his truck and climbed up into the cab where he quickly assessed the man and determined he had no pulse and wasn’t breathing.
Wiggins pulled the man out of the cab with the help of another motorist and carried him into the grass median. He began performing CPR and advised a motorist to call 911.
A nurse saw the scene and joined Wiggins to help give CPR for almost 15 minutes before the fire department arrived. Fire rescue continued CPR and shocked the man several times before he regained a pulse. The man was airlifted to a nearby hospital, and after surgery and rehab, he made a full recovery.
Before Wiggins started his career as a truck driver, he was in law enforcement. Without his previous experience, doctors said the man would have died at the scene.
“I always take the same route, and that day I decided to take a different one,” Wiggins said. “There was a reason I was on that highway May 11. He thinks I saved him, but honestly he saved me.”
For his willingness to help, TCA has presented Wiggins with a certificate, patch, lapel pin, and truck decal. Phillip Williams & Sons also received a certificate acknowledging that one of its drivers is a Highway Angel.