MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A survivor of a fiery crash in the North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis is concerned it could happen again.

A driver accused of racing down Washington Avenue last July hit the car that had Jimmy Wahl and two others inside. It was engulfed in flames when bystanders pulled Wahl out. Charring on the street is still visible a year later.

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Wahl recounts the terrifying moments the Chevy Impala rear-ended the Toyota Corolla he was in.

“I just felt fire below me, the car was on fire, so my legs, I could feel them burning,” Wahl said.

People on the busy Washington Avenue near North 7th Avenue came to the rescue of Wahl and his friends. He suffered third-degree burns on his legs, a broken shoulder blade, neck, ribs and more.

“Personally for me I just keep pushing myself to get better and better,” Wahl said.

After nine months of physical therapy, recovery continues for the local bartender. The support of neighbors, friends and family has helped him through it. He may need another surgery, and still deals with mobility issues and ringing in his ears.

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Jimmy Wahl (credit: CBS)

“I am back to work a few days a week. There will always be things that remind me of what happened, as far as reaching for things, I can’t reach like I used to,” Wahl said. “It brings it all back.”

According to court documents, the driver in the crash was racing another vehicle, going about 100 in a 30 mph zone. Her blood alcohol level over the legal limit at .133.

Wahl lives in the neighborhood and says he’s witnessed similar behavior since the crash.

“It’s like an expressway,” Wahl said. “Cars going through the red lights, squealing their tires, racing off. That’s kind of what gives me the shivers most is when I hear that.”

And he wants to see what he calls the lawlessness stopped.

“It’s just a matter of time before someone else is severely injured or killed out here,” Wahl said.

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The driver in Wahl’s case pleaded guilty last month. A judge will sentence her in early September.

Jennifer Mayerle