Consumers Energy employee receives award for life-saving efforts
WASHINGTON, D.C. (WPBN/WGTU) -- A mid-Michigan Consumers Energy employee was recognized for his life-saving efforts while out on the job.
Jason Potter, a pipeline excavator from Clio, received the 2018 American Gas Association Meritorious Service Award, which honors those in the natural gas industry "who demonstrate exceptional judgment in saving a human life," in Washington, D.C.
Potter was commuting on I-75 to his Birch Run work location during the summer of 2017 when he witnessed a car crash.
Consumers said a speeding vehicle had clipped a car, causing it to spin out of control and roll several times.
While parked in the slow lane to block traffic, with his flashers on, Potter rushed over to the crashed vehicle that had come to rest on the driver's side door.
Potter said the driver's arm was pinned between the vehicle's roof and the ground.
“My first thought was to get her out of there because this car was going to catch on fire. Luckily, another guy stopped to help. We picked up the vehicle and pried the door open to free her arm from underneath,” Potter said.
Potter and another man were able to pull the unconscious woman from the car.
Potter tore off his shirt and used it as a tourniquet along with using his hands to squeeze the artery under the woman's arm to help stop the severe bleeding while another motorist called 911.
“Two months earlier we went through a refresher in CPR training at work,” he said. “So it was fresh in my mind, and my instincts took over.” The injured driver regained consciousness and panicked. Potter calmed her down and continued to hold pressure on her artery until paramedics arrived. She survived the accident.
Consumers said Potter credits his safety training at Consumers Energy as the reason he was able to stay calm during a potentially deadly event.
“I am humbled and honored to receive this award, and am grateful I was in the right place at the right time to be able to help,” Potter said after receiving the award.
Potter was one of five Consumers Energy employees nominated for the award.
The other employees nominated were Dan T. Brown, James Stratton, Charles Hale and Ace Castle.
The prestigious award is given to one individual nationwide based on a review by American Gas Association staff.