HOUSTON (AP) — Two Houston police officers were hospitalized Monday, one in serious condition, after authorities said a drunken driver crashed into their patrol vehicle.
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the officers were responding to a call early Monday with their SUV’s lights and sirens on when another vehicle turned in front of them, causing a near head-on collision. Acevedo says Officer Alonzo Reid, who was the passenger in the SUV, pulled himself to safety as the vehicle burst into flames.
The chief says that Reid along with a passerby rescued the driver, Officer John Daily, from the burning SUV.
Daily suffered burns on roughly 50 percent of his body, Acevedo said. He had already undergone one surgery as of Monday morning and faced another surgery later in the day, the chief said.
Reid is expected to make a full recovery. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said Reid was in “good spirits” Monday morning.
Police declined to identify the driver of the other vehicle. The driver wasn’t hurt, and Acevedo says he was arrested for driving under the influence.
Acevedo said there were two other incidents overnight in which Houston drivers suspected of drinking crashed into police officers. The chief and the mayor urged area residents not to drink and drive, particularly during the Christmas holiday.
They said Daily and Reid were lucky to make it out of their vehicle, which was flipped over and almost unrecognizable after the fire.
“This is a Christmas miracle,” said Acevedo.
(© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)