Speed was a factor in a crash Saturday morning in Wade in which a 16-year-old driver from Washburn was seriously injured, according to state police.
The crash happened about 8:15 a.m. when the teen, who was traveling east on New Dunntown Road at a high speed, lost control of the 1998 Buick Regal he was driving, left the roadway and struck a large tree head on, Cpl. Chuck Michaud said Saturday afternoon.
The car then burst into flames, Michaud said, adding that the impact was so severe the vehicle was nearly split in half.
The crash happened a short distance from the home of Damian Languell, who heard the crash and ran out to help.
Michaud said Languell attempted to put the fire out but quickly realized that it was spreading quickly and then “with complete disregard for his own safety, cut the teenage operator out of his seatbelt, and pulled him out a rear window of the vehicle.”
Once Languell got the teenager out of the vehicle, he was able to drag him to safety before the entire car went up in flames.
The driver, who suffered severe injuries, initially was taken by ambulance to The Aroostook Medical Center in Presque Isle but later was flown to a larger hospital.
The crash remains under investigation by Trooper Nick Casavant.