VIDEO: Body cam captures fiery rescue

(NBC News)

ATHENS-CLARKE COUNTY, GA (NBC News) – Dramatic body camera video shows a Georgia police officer rescuing a man trapped in a burning vehicle.

The incident happened early on the morning of August 16th.

The video shows Athens-Clarke County Police Senior Officer Dan Whitney arriving on scene and grabbing his fire extinguisher from his trunk to try to put the fire out.

He then races to get the man, trapped in the rear seat, out of the vehicle.

The impact bent the vehicle’s frame and jammed all of the doors shut, forcing Officer Whitney to bend the door frame back enough to pull the man through the rear window.

As he did, an explosion from under the hood knocked off the officer’s hat and body cam.

Police say the driver burned to death in the fire.

Without Whitney’s rescue, police say the passenger likely would have died. The back seat was completely melted and gutted within minutes.

Other officers on scene described the heat from the fire as unbearable from 50 feet away. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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