Two teens were seriously injured in a car and tractor-trailer collision on South Carolina 81 in Starr, SC, this week. The two boys were recovering in a local hospital after the crash, in great part to the quick response of the employees at a nearby auto service business.
According to the Anderson Independent Mail, 19-year-old Shawn Bailey of Greer and 18-year-old James Burdette of Starr were driving a 1994 Ford Escort on Luke Bouknight Road when they turned left onto SC 81 into the path of an oncoming big rig. The tractor-trailer t-boned the small car and the vehicle soon caught fire. The car and truck accident took place at just before 3:30 on Thursday afternoon.
Three employees at the nearby business Bouknight Auto Parts jumped to respond to the accident just seconds after the collision occurred. Employee Mike Malmos of Anderson witnessed the accident and alerted his co-workers. While Malmos grabbed a fire extinguisher to put out the burning vehicle, Joseph Osborne of Abbeville pulled the two teens from the car and cleared their airways. Osborne has been trained for these accidents by the National Guard. A third employee, Nikki Bouknight called for help.
Bailey received a serious head injury in the truck accident, and both of the boys were rushed to Medshore Ambulance Service to AnMed Health Medical Center for treatment. The driver of the 18-wheeler, 56-year-old Richard Baker of Iva, was not injured.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating the traffic accident.