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Marc Finch and his father were stopped at a traffic light in Lowell Wednesday night, when they heard car brakes screech and a loud bang, and then saw a car engulfed in flames.

Five seconds later, the 27-year-old Finch said, he and his father, Mark, jumped out of their truck, called 911, and pulled the two male occupants out from the burning wreckage.

Ten minutes later, he said, the emergency crews showed up.

“The car ... was immediately engulfed in flames,” Finch, an electrician from Methuen, said. “If they had stayed [in the car] until the fire department got there, the fire would have gotten to them.”


A 1993 Saab rear-ended a sedan, propelling it about 50 yards at the intersection of VFW Highway and Aiken Street at about 10 p.m., said Lowell Deputy Fire Chief Jeff Winward.

The Saab caught fire, trapping two young males — who looked to be in their 20s — in the wreckage, Winward said.

Both males were transported to Lowell General Hospital with serious injuries, Winward said. Winward said he did not know if the driver of the Saab would be charged.

The male driver in the sedan refused to be taken to the hospital, Winward said.

Had the Finches not been at the scene, Winward said, the two young males in the burning car could have suffered much more serious burns and injuries, and possibly even died.

Mark Finch, 57, of Lowell, said the Saab was going about 40 miles per hour when it slammed into the sedan, and barely missed hitting their truck, which was stopped alongside the sedan at the light.

Finch said as soon as he and his son saw the car was engulfed in flames, their instincts just kicked in.

“It’s something that you just do. ... Hopefully, if something like that happened to me, I would hope someone else would help,” Finch, who is also an electrician, said. “We’ve both always wanted to be firefighters.”


Trisha Thadani can be reached at trisha.thadani@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @TrishaThadani.