Tamaqua woman helped man injured in Lynn Township crash
Crews are on the scene on Route 309 where a man was seriously injured Wednesday morning. COPYRIGHT LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
Chris Noecker made a choice Wednesday to be a good Samaritan.
She was traveling from Tamaqua to Allentown when she came across a crash on Route 309 in Lynn Township just seconds after it happened.
A car and a tractor-trailer had collided and the driver of the car was in bad shape. From appearances the car had lost control and spun into the path of the truck.
“The driver was a young man who looked to be thrown around the car,” Noecker said. “He was in the back seat of the car.”
She immediately called 911, but decided to stop and wait until the ambulance arrived.
“They dispatched EMS quickly, but it seemed to take forever,” Noecker said.
The next person on scene was a personal trainer, who had a towel to help to wipe the blood from the man’s face. He was able to open the rear car door and Noecker reached in to hold the patient’s hand.
She said, “His hand was clenched into a fist as though he was in pain. Sometimes a little bit of touch helps.”
Police have not released crash details, the man's identity or his condition.
The car was damaged on the passenger side and a car seat was in the back. Noecker and the trainer looked for a child but were satisfied that the man was alone.
“We took turns talking to the man,” Noecker said. “He never responded, but we kept telling him to hang on, on the off chance that he could until someone was there.”
Noecker worked as a unit clerk for 17 years and has some medical training, including CPR. They knew they shouldn’t move the man, but they wanted to stay for support.
Instinct took over
This is not the first time Noecker has happened upon a crash scene. She was the first parent on the scene when her stepson was hit by a car when he was riding his bicycle in Tamaqua. “I was in shock but instinct took over,” she said.
She had just kept talking to him though he was fading in and out of consciousness. “I kept telling him to keep his eyes open.” When he recovered he couldn’t remember very much, but “Logan remembered me talking to him.”
The tractor-trailer driver was physically fine, but obviously shaken. “He said his leg hurt from pushing on the brake, but he was traumatized,” Noecker said.
According to reports on the scene, the crash occurred just after 9 a.m., south of the intersection with Route 143 near New Tripoli.
Emergency personnel arriving on scene found a tractor-trailer sitting on the northbound berm against a set of guide rails and a car in the southbound lanes.
It appeared the point of impact may have been in the northbound lane.
The road was slick from early-morning drizzle and possibly fluids from the car, Noecker said.
“It was extremely slick.”
What disturbed Noecker the most was that before the road was closed, motorists drove through the debris without stopping.
“People were trying to drive right past the accident, including another tractor-trailer. Four to five cars followed, but a whole bunch of people stopped,” Noecker said.
State police at Fogelsville are investigating the incident, assisted by a forensic team in accident reconstruction. The report was not ready at press time, but Noecker is anxious to find out the young man’s condition.
“I remember driving away and noticing blood on my hands and fragments of broken glass on my arm,” Noecker said. “I can’t imagine not stopping.”