While on her way to work in the early morning hours of July 14, shortly after pulling out of her neighborhood, Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) TSA Officer Karisa Ingemi noticed a vehicle on the opposite side of the road. The vehicle was heading in the same direction and was wrapped around a phone pole, with heavy smoke coming from the engine compartment; the phone pole was splintered in half.
“'Was anyone still in the vehicle? What is going on? Someone needs help,' were my first thoughts,” said Ingemi.
With no first responders on the road or any other vehicle there to help, Ingemi stopped her truck
in the middle of the road and sprang into action when she saw that the driver was still in the SUV. She immediately pulled over and called 911 emergency dispatch. The 911 dispatcher informed Ingemi that someone had already reported the accident and that emergency personnel were on their way.
As she was hanging up with 911, she noticed a young woman was trying to get out of the smoldering vehicle. Checking the vacant street for traffic, Ingemi rushed over to her to see if she was hurt and offer assistance. She walked the victim until they were a safe distance away from the shattered pole and car and sat down. “Are you okay,” she asked the stunned woman. With no discernible answer, she remained with the stunned victim until the first responders arrived.
Once the EMTs and the Delaware State Police (DSP) started to arrive, they engaged the vehicle and removed the driver. The driver said she was hurt and her head was bleeding. When the EMTs started to ask her about her injuries, she stopped responding. She was later transported to a local hospital and her condition was not known.
A DSP officer asked Ingemi if she saw the accident happen. She said she hadn’t and commented, “I was on my way to work when I arrived at the crash.” When the officer discovered that she worked in Philly, he said she was good to go and that he didn’t want to hold her up.