Lufkin man trapped after car leaves roadway and hits tree

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - "I heard a loud noise and ran outside to see a man trapped in his car.  The car had hit a tree in my front yard.  I yelled for my daughter to call 9-1-1."  That's how Janie Contreras described what happened after J.T. Gilbert of Lufkin apparently lost control of his car and ended up in Contreras' front yard.

Contreras lives near the corner of Feagan Drive and Lazy Lane.  She told KTRE when she saw the accident and realized someone was hurt, she tried to help.  She says the airbag had deployed and smoke was coming from it, so she tried to move the victim's face away from the smoke.

Rescue crews and paramedics were able to free Gilbert from the wreckage.

Gilbert was transported by ambulance to Memorial Hospital then transported by helicopter to a Tyler hospital, according to Lufkin Police Sgt. David Walker.

Walker said they're investigating to determine whether a medical condition contributed to the accident.  He said Gilbert was driving on Feagan when his car left the roadway and ran into a tree in a resident's front yard.  Sergeant Walker says the accelerator was engaged.

It took emergency crews about 20 minutes to get Gilbert out of his car.  The accident happened shortly before 12:30 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.

Saturday, Gilbert was in critical, but stable condition in a Tyler hospital.

Get an update on this story here on and on KTRE's East Texas News.