Maryland troopers rescued a suspected impaired driver from his blazing car early Monday morning shortly after he struck a patrol car, causing it to hit and injure a trooper who was responding to a separate crash in Beltsville, authorities say.
Francis Ndoh, 29, of Laurel, was charged with driving under the influence after the crash involving his light green Ford Fusion, Maryland State Police said in a release.
Two state troopers were investigating a crash on northbound Route 1 and Ritz Way shortly after 2 a.m. when Ndoh crashed into the back of their patrol cars, which then struck one of the troopers who was outside of his cruiser, state police said.
The impact sent the trooper into the air and he landed about 10-15 feet away from the scene, police said. He had been standing a few feet away from his vehicle at the time of the crash, authorities said.
Medics took the trooper to Suburban Hospital and he was later released.
Another trooper, who was uninjured, was exiting his patrol vehicle at the exact moment of the crash.
Then, the Ford Fusion caught fire and troopers on the scene ran to the burning car and got the driver out, police said. Ndoh was unconscious, police said.
Ndoh regained consciousness before medics took him to the University of Maryland Capital Region Medical Center, police said.
Maryland State Police said both patrol vehicles were parked in the roadway with their emergency lights on at the time of the crash.
Stay with News4 for updates to this developing story.