URBANA, Ohio – 26-year-old Nicholas Halaoui is recovering at Miami Valley Hospital as of Sunday night after driving his car off a bridge in Champaign County on U.S. 68 near Springfield-Urbana Pike.
Halaoui was stranded upside in his car for several hours before crawling to safety and alerting a bicyclist riding on a nearby bike path who immediately called 911.
“All I could do was crawl,” Halaoui said. “I tried to grab some sticks and use them as crutches and I took one step and fell to the ground.”
A bruised and cut-up Nicholas Halaoui told his incredible story from his hospital bed Sunday nearly 20 hours after driving his car off of a bridge in Champaign County. Halaoui says he was knocked unconsious for several hours after the crash.
When he finally came to the next morning, he says was confident he would make it out alive.
Jordan: “Did you ever have a moment where you thought you weren’t gonna make it?”
Nicholas: “No, absolutely not. I knew it was just a leg. I was worried how long it was gonna take me. That was scary. Being down there crawling inch by inch.”
Halaoui says the last thing he remembers is getting second place in a poker game. Hours later when he re-gained consciousness he noticed he was upside down in his car on the railroad tracks. He realized he didn’t have his cellphone and his leg was broken. That’s when he decide to get out of his car and crawl, but he didn’t get very far.
“I layed on my side, my left side, and just kind of held my right leg and would move 2 to 3 inches at a time through the rocks and I didn’t make it far,” Halaoui said. “I crawled for two maybe three hours before someone got to me.”
A bicyclist passing by on the bike path saw the car, and heard Halaoui shouting for help, and immediately called 911.
“As soon as they got there they said since I was unconscious for so long around 6 to 7 hours, they would care flight me,” Halaoui said. “[They] picked me up and brought me here to Miami Valley.”
As soon as Halaoui got to Miami Valley Hospital, doctors performed emergency surgery, placing a metal rod in his leg. He says the only thing he can think of that may have caused the accident is that he fell asleep behind the wheel. Deputies say the cause of the crash remains under investigation.