TRUMP 1-ON-1

Former President Trump speaks exclusively with News 12 on possible VP picks, immigration and other topics TONIGHT at 10 p.m.

Melville firefighter honored for rescuing man trapped in burning car

Firefighters across Suffolk County were honored at the Melville Fire Department Sunday, receiving awards for heroic acts in the line of duty.

News 12 Staff

Sep 22, 2019, 9:13 PM

Updated 1,705 days ago

Share:

Firefighters across Suffolk County were honored at the Melville Fire Department Sunday, receiving awards for heroic acts in the line of duty.

Among those recognized was third Assistant Chief of the Melville Fire Department, Jason Bernfeld.
Bernfeld received a gold medal for rescuing a man from a burning car in March of last year.

"Just heading to work on the Northern State Parkway, normal rush hour commute. Happened to see something out of the corner of my eye,” he recalls.

He saw the taillight of a car upside down in the woods on the Northern State, right past Round Swamp Road.

"I went down, investigated, I shouted, 'Hey is anybody there?' and somebody shouted out for help. So I was surprised somebody was actually there,” says Bernfeld.

Chief Bernfeld wasn't in a fire truck and he wasn't on duty, but still acted as if he was in uniform responding to a call, selflessly coming to the rescue.

Inside the car was a man, still in the driver's seat, upside down, trapped by the seatbelt - and the car was on fire.
Luckily, Bernfeld had tools in his car.

"Hit the fire with the fire extinguisher to give it some time, cut the seatbelt, got him down out the seat and between him and I got him out of the vehicle,” says Bernfeld.

Bernfeld was able to pull him out before the car became fully engulfed in flames. The firefighter says the man had some burns on his legs and other minor injuries from the crash.
After receiving his gold medal, Bernfeld remained humble.

"It's not what I did it for, I never thought about this at all, I never thought of the enormity of the situation at all, just doing what anybody would do,” he says.

A total of nine medals were awarded to firefighters at Sunday’s ceremony.
 


More from News 12
1:24
Suffolk DA enters Heuermann’s home on 4th consecutive day of police search

Suffolk DA enters Heuermann’s home on 4th consecutive day of police search

1:34
Friday morning clouds give way to sunshine ahead of a warm weekend

Friday morning clouds give way to sunshine ahead of a warm weekend

2:29
Preparations underway for Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach

Preparations underway for Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach

0:26
LI Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame cancels Billy Joel tribute concert

LI Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame cancels Billy Joel tribute concert

1:41
Nassau County PD holds ceremony to honor members who died in line of duty

Nassau County PD holds ceremony to honor members who died in line of duty

1:38
Massapequa nurse reunites with Melville physician assistant who donated her kidney

Massapequa nurse reunites with Melville physician assistant who donated her kidney

0:20
Elmont man sentenced to 15 years behind bars for carrying loaded gun, meth

Elmont man sentenced to 15 years behind bars for carrying loaded gun, meth

2:10
Parents of nonverbal teen with special needs file notice of claim against New Hyde Park school, say teacher tied up their son

Parents of nonverbal teen with special needs file notice of claim against New Hyde Park school, say teacher tied up their son

2:47
Best Beaches: We are kicking off the unofficial start to summer at Jones Beach

Best Beaches: We are kicking off the unofficial start to summer at Jones Beach

News 12 Book Club

News 12 Book Club

0:23
Tunnel to Towers pays off Seaford home of fallen Marine Corps sergeant

Tunnel to Towers pays off Seaford home of fallen Marine Corps sergeant

0:25
Police: Man arrested after hitting, killing pedestrian in Brentwood

Police: Man arrested after hitting, killing pedestrian in Brentwood

0:26
Road closures around Eisenhower Park expected during Cricket World Cup next month

Road closures around Eisenhower Park expected during Cricket World Cup next month

1:47
Take a trip with the family to Port Jefferson Village for food, sweets and history

Take a trip with the family to Port Jefferson Village for food, sweets and history

2:11
West Hempstead woman sentenced to 3 to 9 years in prison for crash that killed 2 teens

West Hempstead woman sentenced to 3 to 9 years in prison for crash that killed 2 teens

2:08
Officials: Attorney general investigating fatal wrong-way Southern State crash; victim identified

Officials: Attorney general investigating fatal wrong-way Southern State crash; victim identified

0:55
Luminaria fundraiser in Long Beach supports children, young adults who have lost loved ones

Luminaria fundraiser in Long Beach supports children, young adults who have lost loved ones

0:40
Long Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce holds 'Latina Hat Luncheon'

Long Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce holds 'Latina Hat Luncheon'

2:42
Garden Guide: This is why you should grow Geraniums this summer

Garden Guide: This is why you should grow Geraniums this summer

RESULTS: School Vote 2024 budget results

RESULTS: School Vote 2024 budget results