MOSCOW, January 27. /TASS/. A Moscow traffic policeman who saved a female driver whose car plunged into the icy Moscow River after a road accident has said he doesn't consider himself a hero.
"We have a coordinated team, experienced people are working with me and everyone was ready to descend to a sinking car, not only me. There were three more staff members who also took off their jackets and I was just slimmer than them and it was easier to get me out of there," Captain Alexei Konyayev said.
The incident, where the female driver lost control and crashed through a road barrier, occurred in downtown Moscow on Thursday evening when temperatures in the city plunged to 10 degrees Celsius below zero.
Konyayev, who was patrolling the area at that moment, saw a crowd of people on the pavement near the guard rail. "We stopped and saw that three bars of the guard rail were missing and came up to find out what happened and saw a sinking Subaru car."
The man jumped into the ice cold water, broke the rear windshield of the sinking car with a piece of a block of ice and rescued the 34-year-old woman. His colleagues and eyewitnesses used a towing cable to help the policeman and the woman to get ashore, the Interior Ministry’s spokeswoman Irina Volk said.
Konyayev is currently in a Moscow hospital. The man said his health is satisfactory and he had no injury. "My fingers were frozen but at the moment everything is alright."
The policeman will soon receive a state award. The city police will also give an award to one of the drivers, a 44-year-old native of Kabardino-Balkaria Murat Shomakhov, who helped Konyayev to save the woman.