MOUNT OLIVE — Two Department of Transportation workers were honored by State Police for rescuing a man from a car fire on Route 80.

Car that burst into flames on Route 80 after an accident (NJ State Police)

Michael Lapadula and Jared Piazza were driving on Feb. 28 when they saw a car go off the highway in Mount Olive. The car hit a sign, rolled over and landed back on the highway. The driver of the car was trapped inside as the car burst in to flames.

Lapadula used a fire extinguisher from his car to put out the fire. The two men cut the driver out of his seatbelt and dragged him out the car's back door.

State Police Superintendent Colonel Rick Fuentes, Lieutenant Colonel Patrick Callahan and DOT commissioner Richard Hammer honored the men for their heroics.

"If not for their quick and decisive actions, the driver, in all likelihood, would not have survived the crash," State Police said.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at

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