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Guide dog credited for saving trainers from out-of-control car

June 12, 2013 6:59:22 PM PDT
A dog being trained to assist the blind passed a frightening, real-life test in San Rafael Monday morning.

Trainers for Guide Dogs for the Blind walking, teaching and working with animals on the streets of San Rafael is not an unusual site.

"We're working on having as straight a line to the curbs, and then on from there," Danielle Alvarado said.

Usually, it's a routine, but on Monday, at the corner of 4th and e streets, it nearly became a deathly disaster. Alvarado, Todd Jurek and a yellow lab named O'Neil barely escaped an out-of-control car that barreled down the sidewalk at high speed.

"It shot out like a rocket," Richard Bolds said. Bolds owns the building on the corner, which has surveillance cameras and captured the incident on video.

O'Neil alerted Jurek to the quickly approaching car and Jurek was able to push the blindfolded Alvarado around the corner to safety.

"I think the dog looked before I did," Jurek said. "I don't know what it would have done if I were not there, so you never know."

The driver was a 93-year-old woman in the car with her husband. It remains unclear how she lost control. The car broke a window, left skid marks along the side of the building, and somehow squeezed all the way through to the street.

Guide Dogs for the Blind breeds puppies, trains them, and gives roughly 300 dogs a year to needy blind people across the country.


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