Apex man saves three teens passed out in a running car

Apex First Responders - image by Mike Rusher
First responders aid three teens found unresponsive in a vehicle in Apex. Image courtesy of Mike Rusher.

APEX — A man is being hailed as a good Samaritan after taking the time to investigate three teens seemingly passed out in a running vehicle.

The car with the three teens in it was blocking part of the left turn lane on the off-ramp from westbound U.S. 64 onto Williams Street near the Beaver Creek Commons shopping complex.

It was honking and odd maneuvers to get around the car by other drivers that first got the attention of Apex resident Mike Rusher.

Rusher said he was on his way to Target to pick up diapers for his 8-month old daughter when he passed through the intersection and noticed car others were honking at.

“I noticed the driver and the passenger in front were slumped over and their heads were just tilted to the side,” said Rusher. “It looked like they were sleeping.”

Rusher said he looked back at the car and just felt something wasn’t right, so he pulled off into a parking lot a few hundred yards down the road and went back to go check it out.

When Rusher got closer to the car, he could see it was two teens in the front seats and a younger female in the backseat. All of them were out cold.

“None of them were moving,” Rusher said. “The windows were down, so just I started calling out to them and there was zero response – no movement at all.”

Without hesitating, Rusher called 911 and then began checking to see if the occupants were breathing and still alive.

Rusher added that the driver’s foot resting on the break and the car being on a small incline was probably all that kept the car from rolling right out into the middle of the intersection.

“The car was running,” said Rusher. “The car was in drive and the driver’s foot was just resting on the break.”

To avoid a possible bad situation if the driver were suddenly to awaken, Rusher said he turned the car off and waited for emergency responders to show up.

It was at least six to seven minutes before Rusher was able to get back to the vehicle on foot and he said he had no idea how long it had been there before he passed through the intersection, but it had been there long enough to back up traffic.

“What really stuck out is nobody else stopped,” said Rusher. “I’m running around the car like a crazy person and no one else bothered to even ask what was going on.”

Another thing that stuck out to Rusher was that when the Firetruck showed up with horns and sirens blaring, the occupants of the vehicle didn’t move at all and no one woke up.

The trio teens have not been identified. Apex Fire Department and police responded to the call for service Monday. Neither department had any new information on the case but referred NSJ to Wake County EMS.

Jeffrey Hammerstein, Public Information Officer for Wake EMS said in an email that the agency doesn’t release any information on individuals they respond to due to federal privacy laws.