‘It Was Instinct’: San Dimas Man Commended for Pulling Unconscious Driver From Burning Mustang

Officials on Saturday recognized a local resident for saving a driver from a burning vehicle in San Dimas.

The incident happened around 6 p.m. on Thursday, when Sebastian Picardi witnessed a Mustang slam into a concrete barrier on San Dimas Canyon Road near Caballo Ranch Road, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

The agency said the man, who was walking his dog at the time, quickly secured his pet and told another passerby to call 911.

The Mustang caught fire, but Picardi still "selflessly ran full speed" toward the vehicle and found the 63-year-old female driver unconscious, the Sheriff's Department said.

"It was instinct, I think," Picardi told KTLA. "I just went in, I unbuckled her seatbelt, I pulled her out."

Deputy Humberto Inzunza arrived at the scene and found the car engulfed in flames. Picardi was with the woman a safe distance away, the Sheriff's Department said.

Video from the officer captured the fiery scene after Picardi's heroic actions.

“This guy should get a medal," Inzunza said in a statement. "I got there not even a minute after he got her out. By that time the fire was inside the passenger compartment and so hot I couldn’t get to the other side. I honestly believe if it weren’t for him she would have died."

The 63-year-old victim, whose name was not released, has been discharged from the hospital as she continued to recover from her injuries, authorities said.

They provided no details about what might have caused the crash.