Truckdrivers Terry Harvey and Floyd Anthony Miller were honored with this year's highway hero award at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, KY.
They were awarded for their bravery and resourcefulness in rescuing two motorists trapped in separate cars on Mountain Parkway in Kentucky from certain death. On June 22, Harvey and Miller, driving separate rigs, came upon a fiery accident involving a Jeep and a sedan. The men quickly leaped from their trucks and broke out the back window of the overturned jeep and used a knife to free the driver from his seatbelt. They then used an air mattress from the back of the Jeep to pull the driver to safety.
The pair then turned to the sedan, with its driver still pinned inside. The sedan was sitting perilously close to the fire spreading from the Jeep. As bystanders stood at a safe distance, fearing an explosion, Harvey and Miller attached a nylon strap from Harvey's truck to the car and attempted to pull the sedan free of the fire. On the third attempt the strap held and Harvey dragged the car to safety.
Soon afterward, the blaze reached the Jeep's gas tank, creating a fireball that engulfed the area where the sedan previously rested.
When rescue crews arrived, Miller, an experienced EMS technician, helped crew members free the driver with the "Jaws of Life." Both drivers survived the accident.
Harvey, who drives for American Freightways Inc. of Lexington, and Miller who at the time was driving for Kentucky Petroleum Supply of Winchester, were among 24 truckdrivers from the United States and Canada who were chosen in December as state/provincial Highway Heroes. Six finalists were named in February.
The other 1999 finalists included Jeffrey Wiles of Montpelier, OH; John McDonald of Memphis, TN, and Morris Holley of Baltimore, MD; and Ronald McKee of Middletown, NJ.
This year marks only the fourth time in the 17-year history of the award that two drivers have shared the award. Miller and Harvey split a $20,000 savings bond. Each of the other finalists received a $5,000 savings bond. All finalists received a free trip to the Mid-America Trucking Show and a trip to Nashville.