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McNair resident dies in fiery one-car crash

The burned-out shell of a car lies in a ditch on Broad Street in McNair, after the accident.

A McNair resident died in a fiery one-car accident last Saturday morning. Derrick Tyler, 34, was returning home after work at a metal plate pipe yard, when he apparently fell asleep and drove into a ditch along the 2600 block of Broad Street in McNair.

The accident occurred about 9 a.m. in the morning, and neighbors saw the flames as the car caught fire. Shuntay Montgomery and two other neighbors, Keshla Montgomery and Edgar Johnson, attempted to save Tyler, as flames engulfed the car and the driver. They tried to open the door and help the driver out, but it was jammed because the car was wedged into the ditch. As the flames raged, they also tried to save Tyler by pouring water on his body through the partially opened passenger door, to suppress the flames. Keshla Montgomery ran to her home, and brought back gallons of water that had been recently purchased, pouring the contents on Tyler. Johnson tried to break a window, to no avail. Tyler was trapped in the car, yelling “Help me, help me!” But the rescuers were not successful, and had to stop when the car exploded.

The rescuers desperately needed help, but McNair has not had a fire department for over a year, and even the firehouse has been torn down. Highlands Fire Department was called, and Fire Chief Harvey Little said that an ambulance reached the scene in about five minutes from receiving the 911 call, and a fire engine arrived in about 14 minutes. But it was too late, the fire had consumed the car and killed the driver. Lt. Kim Fonville with the Harris County Sheriff’s office said they were investigating the accident, including when a call for help was made, and how long it took to respond.