(RIVERSIDE, Calif.) — A California man is being hailed as a hero after he was captured on video rescuing a driver from a burning car recently.
In the dramatic video, recorded Tuesday, Santiago Portillo can be seen running over to the overturned car and peering inside at the driver. Despite the hot flames and the dark, black smoke, Portillo reaches down and grabs the driver's clothing, dragging him out to safety.
Portillo told the Riverside Press Enterprise on Wednesday that he was working in a nearby mattress store when he heard a loud noise. When he looked outside, he saw the car upside down and ablaze.
He said he started taping the crash on his cellphone but then noticed the driver still in the car. He put the phone down -- with the video still rolling -- and rushed to help.
"It looked unreal," he told the Press Enterprise. "The black smoke was choking me. ... The car was totaled."
Authorities, who reached the scene of the crash shortly afterward, said the crash was the result of street racing, according to ABC-owned station KABC-TV.
They did not identify the driver, but said he'd sustained injuries to the head and leg, KABC reports.
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