Wash. police officer saves woman from burning vehicle

A police officer is being hailed as a hero after pulling a woman from a burning vehicle Friday.

Her auto burst into flames as she called 911.

Spokane Police Officer Tim Schwering heard the call and he rushed to the scene. Schwering broke a hole in the window with his baton but eventually was forced to pull it out entirely when he couldn't unlock the door.

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The woman, Kim Novak, was miraculously left unharmed, while Schwering was treated for smoke inhalation. She tried kicking out the windows but couldn't.

"I was thinking to myself, 'It's not going to be long, it's coming under the floor bed and it's coming near me, '" she said.

With the help of a neighbor, the two got Novak safely out of the vehicle.

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Novak recalled the incident in an interview with KHQ-TV.

A neighbor from a nearby house also assisted in the rescue efforts, police said.

"The flames are getting bigger and bigger and the smoke is bellowing in and I'm now I'm starting to lose control because now I'm really freaking out". The call was broadcast on both fire and police channels, and several officers responded to the call. "It's humbling to think it can happen that fast without any warning", she told him. "I kicked and kicked and I didn't even make a crack", she said. The cause of the fire, which reportedly started when Novak's vehicle suddenly shut off while driving over an ice patch, remains unclear.

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