Josh Grimaldi, a truck driver for Prime Inc., has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for rescuing a pregnant woman after a rollover accident.
On Dec. 13, 2015, Grimaldi was driving westbound on a cold and snow I-80 over Donner Pass heading into California. He noticed a car attempting to pass him in his side mirror when the car hit a patch of ice and began to swerve. The car hit the back of Grimaldi’s trailer, blowing his trailer tire.
The car, still in a spin, flipped several times before coming to a rest on its side near the edge of the road. Grimaldi immediately pulled over and ran to the vehicle.
“The car was completely crushed,” he said. “I thought whoever was in there was dead.”
He attempted to open the door without success, then yelled to another motorist who had stopped to call 911. He ran back to his truck, grabbed his flashlight, and used it to force open the car door. When he got in the car, he found a woman in shock and screaming that she was pregnant.
Grimaldi tried to calm the woman and encourage her to crawl to him, but he had to climb into the car and lift the woman onto the top of the car. He helped her to a nearby embankment, and another woman who happened to be a nurse stopped to help.
Grimaldi set up strobe lights on the crashed vehicle and set out reflective triangles to warn other drivers, then called 911 to speak directly to paramedics about the situation.
At the time of the accident, he had been driving a truck for less than a year, but before that, he had served five years in the Marine Corps. During his time in driver training, he assisted another driver in a rollover accident in Texas.
For his willingness to help, TCA presented Grimaldi with a certificate, patch, lapel pin and truck decal. Prime Inc. also received a certificate acknowledging their driver as a Highway Angel.