“Hero of the Road” climbs into a vehicle that is still rolling
Stefan Erdmann from Barsinghausen near Hanover is “Road Hero” of the month February. The Automobile Club of Germany honored the 55-year-old for his courageous commitment in a tricky traffic situation.
Stefan Erdmann was driving his truck on the A2 to Dortmund in November when he saw a dump truck in front of him shortly before a motorway exit in Hanover, which was slowly and uncontrollably lurching over the lanes and hit another semi-trailer truck in the rear. A little later it hit the crash barrier and continued to roll along it. The 55-year-old reacted immediately, diverted his truck in the middle of two lanes to block following traffic and switched on the hazard warning lights. Then Stefan Erdmann ran to the vehicle, which was still slowly rolling. “By touching the crash barriers, there were no more steps, everything was torn away,” the first responder describes the first moment. However, the man from Lower Saxony finally managed to pull himself up on the driver’s cab and open the door. He saw the driver who had fallen to one side and reached over him for the parking brake. With that he stopped the dump truck. Stefan Erdmann then switched off everything on the vehicle and turned to the unresponsive driver.
When another motorist stopped, the 55-year-old asked him to alert the emergency services. He himself raised the motionless truck driver in his seat and stayed by his side. When the victim regained consciousness, he wanted to get up and get out. Stefan Erdmann calmed the man down and asked him to wait until the emergency services arrived, who finally took him to the hospital.
When he had gotten some rest after his day at work in the evening, the helper remembered his dashcam. The pictures show that the dump truck at the crash barrier had probably tilted to one side due to the softened soil from the heavy rain and could have overturned, since there were only simple crash barriers at the scene of the accident. Stefan Erdmann handed over the material for the reconstruction of the accident to the police.
Every month, the Automobile Club of Germany is looking for people like Stefan Erdmann, who have helped other road users in emergency situations through their exemplary behavior. The traffic safety campaign is supported by the magazine “Auto Verkehr”. (awm)