Accident sends SUV into Cherry Creek; driver hospitalized

The accident scene at 8th & Speer Blvd. where the SUV crashed into Cherry Creek. April 15, 2012

The accident scene at 8th & Speer Blvd. where the SUV crashed into Cherry Creek. April 15, 2012

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DENVER -- A man was hospitalized with serious injuries after his Acura SUV collided with a car suspected of running a red light at the intersection of 8th and Speer Boulevard Sunday morning, police said.

The man’s SUV crashed into Cherry Creek across from Denver Health Medical Center.

"He was headed eastbound on Speer. The other vehicle was headed westbound on 8th avenue. They collided and he was thrown into the river," said Denver Fire Department representative Lt. Phil Champagne.

The driver was immersed in 3 feet of water before he was rescued.

"There were sirens and emergencies vehicles coming at us from all directions," a witness told FOX31 Denver.

"I just ran over and tried to do what I could to get him out," says Sam Kimton, who not only witnessed the crash but was the first person to rush into the water to help the victim. "He was upside-down and some guys and I were able to break the glass and get him out.”

Security guards from nearby Denver Health Medical Center also rushed to the man's rescue. They helped pry open the vehicle doors, cut the man's seatbelt loose and pull him out.

"He was in pretty rough shape when we pulled him out. He wasn't breathing … he had been underwater for several minutes," adds Kimpton.

Denver fire crews gave the victim CPR at the scene and then rushed the victim to Denver Health.

Thanks to one of the nation's best trauma centers right across the street and the team efforts from everyone who rushed to help, the victim survived.

"This obviously could have been a fatality. It appears he's making a remarkable recovery," said Lt. Champagne.

According to police, the victim was breathing on his own and talking shortly after the crash.

The person responsible was cited for careless driving resulting in serious bodily injury.

Both the names of the victim and the driver responsible for causing the crash are begin withheld until the investigation is complete.

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