(CNN) – A hero volunteer firefighter is talking about how he helped a little girl who fell out of the back of a bus. Ryan Ciampoli saw the incident as he was driving behind the bus in Harrison, AR.
“It was just unbelievable,” Ciampoli told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield. “One minute I’m just driving down the road, and the next minute I see a little girl swing over the door on this church bus and fall to the highway. It was heartbreaking, but instantly I used my EMS training and firefighter training and assessed the scene as best I could.
“I realized that it wasn’t a good place for her laying there. Typically, in EMS, we’re not supposed to move the patient unless they’re in a pretty dangerous situation. And because she was on the state highway there in Harrison, Arkansas, it was grounds to get her out of there. I couldn’t stand for her to get hit by a car or someone hit us both, and so I immediately got out of my car.
“I realized the pavement was going to be hot because it was like 80 degrees that day, and so as soon as I ran over to her and approached her, she was unconscious at first. But then she started to move her arm and kind of look up at me, and so I picked her up as carefully as I could and held her in my arms and kind of assessed her little body to see what kind of damages had been done by her fall.
“And it’s hard to use a clear head, but I tried my best. I have an 8-year-old son. I’ve got kids, little girls, and it’s hard. So just picking her up and getting her out of that situation, out of the middle of the road, was priority one.”
The 4-year-old girl was later hospitalized with a broken jaw. Her parents said she will need surgery, but she should be out of the hospital Monday.
The incident was captured on Ciampoli’s dash-cam.
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