Alcohol may have played a factor in Thursday night's four-vehicle collision in Fremont, according to police. That may explain why the driver of a pickup truck was going the wrong way on Ardenwood Boulevard near Paseo Padre Parkway.
The pickup then hit a minivan and an SUV. Police say the minivan then crashed into a big rig. Eight people were taken to the hospital; two in critical condition.
"It was a mess," Walter Hill said.
He was on his way home when he passed by the accident scene. He saw people stuck in their cars.
"There were two in here [pointing to the SUV] and they were panicking," Hill said. "And they were in shock. Bleeding from the face. I just went over there to calm them down."
Hill heard the screams coming from the pickup truck and ran over to help.
"I grabbed the door and I pulled it out and the guy reached for my hand and I grabbed him. We locked like this and I pulled him out the truck," Hill said.
Fremont firefighters say the pickup was carrying swimming pool chemicals like hydrochloric acid and muriatic acid. The accident caused the acids to spill onto the ground. That caused vapors to fly into the air. Hazardous materials crews were called out to contain the fumes.
"The chlorine, the muriatic acid will actually attack your lungs and you'll start forming basically, you'll have liquid on your lungs and it's difficult to breathe," John Garza, Fremont Police Battalion Chief, said.
Hill said he's happy he was there to help save lives.
"It was unbelievable...My adrenalin just kicked in and I didn't even think about what I was seeing," Hill said.