David Howland, a professional truck driver for ABF Freight System Inc., has been named a Truckload Carriers Association Highway Angel for assisting a motorist who was trapped between deployed airbags. On Feb. 17 at about 8:30 a.m., Howland was driving along Interstate 696 near Pontiac, Mich., when a car on his left lost control. It spun beside him and hit two other vehicles before crashing into the median retaining wall.
One of the vehicles that was hit rolled beside him four to five times before coming to a stop. Managing to keep control of his equipment, Howland stopped safely and rushed to assist the driver whose car had rolled. He found a female trapped between the deployed airbags. He cut the airbags with a pocket knife and found her in miraculously good condition, with only minor injuries.
Seeing that the drivers of the other two cars were okay, Howland stayed with the woman he had helped, asking her to remain in her vehicle until emergency personnel arrived. “I’m on the road a lot, and I’ll help anybody if I’m there,” says Howland, who has been a truck driver for 30 years and has helped motorists several times in the past. “It’s a shame that nobody else stopped.”