Heroic passers-by who dragged a man from a burning refuse truck in Baston seconds before it exploded are to be nominated for a Royal Humane Society award.
An announcement on behalf of Chief Constable Neil Rhodes was made at the inquest of 82-year-old Alexander Glenn, who died when his red Rover car collided with a South Kesteven District Council waste and recycling truck.
The accident happened on the A15 at Baston near Waterside Garden Centre.
Mr Glenn, of Churchview, Northborough, died at the scene, but the dramatic events that followed the collision saw witnesses risk their own lives to free Ian Simmons, who was trapped in the truck.
One driver – Gary Clewlow, of Beech Road, Spalding – said he saw Mr Glenn’s oncoming car swerve into the path of the truck. He said: “After the collision there was lots of smoke and an explosion.”
Carl Creasey, service manager of Mercedes-Benz in Boston, said: “I could see the driver of the car was already dead. The truck had burst into flames and I saw someone trapped on the passenger seat. He was shouting ‘I’m going to die’ and I climbed in and started moving the dash and anything else to free him.
“We managed to get him out and someone put water on his burns.”
South Lincolnshire Coroner Professor Robert Forest recorded a verdict of accidental death on Mr Glenn. He said: “Mr Glenn died from multiple injuries, but we may never know what made him stray into the path of the refuse truck.”
A statement from Mr Glenn’s family thanked the police and emergency services for the sensitive way they dealt with the investigation. It said: “We also wish to extend our thoughts to the passenger in the lorry and his family during his recovery.”