Deputy Williams saves women from burning car

When a car caught on fire at a Norfolk gas station, Deputy Erica Williams heard cries for help.

“I’m hearing the car is on fire. I looked at pump number one, and I saw the fire. I couldn’t let it burn,” Williams said.

 She saw the driver escape the white Subaru, but flames were still shooting up from underneath the vehicle dangerously close to a gas pump.

 “I didn’t want the car to blow up,” Williams recalled.

She knew a larger explosion could potentially threaten lives at the nearby McDonalds and apartments behind the Shell Gas Station at 418 St. Paul’s Blvd. 

“I was really, really scared. I panicked,” cashier Kiara Edwards recalls. She came running out with a fire extinguisher. “I could not pull the pin out, my hands were sweating,” she said.

 Deputy Williams took charge, calmly removing the pin, and extinguishing the fire.

 “She saved my life, and the lives of others,” Edwards said.

 If it weren’t for Edwards, you wouldn’t be reading this story. She wrote to the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office to tell us about Deputy Williams’s actions.

 “She was risking her own life. I felt like if she wasn’t there, I wouldn’t know what would have happened,” Edwards said.

 It was just by chance that Deputy Williams was working a part time security job at the gas station that night. She was filling in for another worker who couldn’t make it.

 So after her normal eight hour shift at the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office, she started her second job. She never imagined it would be so chaotic, but she was able to handle the challenge. 

 “It was the skills I learned at the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office on how to react. Your training just kicks in and you just do what you have to do,” Deputy Williams remarked.

 As a single mother of two teenage boys, she has mastered managing many things at a time.  “I love what I do. When you leave your job, you just want to go home to your family. I kept thinking put the fire out, and get home to my kids,” Deputy Williams said.

Williams was honored by WTKR-TV for “Taking Action, and Getting Results,” and her story was aired on 13News Now.

In Touch

811 E. City Hall Avenue
Norfolk, VA 23510

(757) 664-4700

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

© 2022 Norfolk Sheriff's Office. All rights reserved.