911 Operator Recalls Teen’s 125mph Journey Down Highway
ROCKWALL (CBSDFW.COM) - When a teen driver called 911 for help, saying his gas pedal was stuck and he was traveling down the highway at 125 mph, it was 911 operator Alisha Bumelis who answered the call.
Bumelis has been a 911 operator for more than a decade but she had never had a call quite like this.
Part of the 911 call recording went like this:
Driver: “I cannot stop. The gas is stuck. I’ve tried pulling it up. I’ve tried hitting the brakes. I’ve tried the emergency brake.”
Operator: “This is Rockwall County, we have a deputy behind you. We’re doing everything we can. We’re having trouble, though.”
“I didn’t know how to react. I was just going through the process of trying to look online and trying to figure out what he could do,” Bumelis said.
The driver, 16 year-old Elez Lushaj, was speeding down I-30 in his 2011 Hyundai Elantra, when he says his gas pedal got stuck and there was nothing he could do to the stop the vehicle.
A Rockwall Sheriff’s deputy stayed behind him, trying to keep innocent bystanders out of the way and keep everyone safe.
But after a 90 mile journey over several counties, Lushaj took a turn and crashed. Only days ago did Bumelis see the dramatic video that was recorded from the deputies dashboard camera.
“It looked more dangerous than I had pictured in my head whenever it wall happening, but you’re just thinking of the immediate whenever you’re on the phone with them,” she said.
Bumelis said she’s glad the teen driver is okay. She says what she did that day was all in a day’s work.
“You never know what’s going to happen each when you come in and it’s a chance to genuinely help somebody,” she said.
Hyundai also responded to a request for information and sent this statement:
“It is extremely unlikely there would be simultaneous and spontaneous failure of the braking, acceleration and transmission all at the same time. We have a never heard from the driver, his family nor their representatives and have not had a chance to inspect the car in order to determine what went on here. We would like to speak with the parties involved and take a look at the car. And we’d like to find out why this hadn’t come to our attention for almost three months.”
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