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Man Injured By Runaway Tractor
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A Riverbank man suffered critical injuries after he was pulled underneath his own tractor and pinned underneath for about an hour and a half east of Riverbank on Saturday afternoon.

Jim Schmitt was in intensive care at Memorial Medical Center on Monday with a broken arm and leg but "conscious and coherent," said his son, Brent Schmitt, who added his father is 83 and lost his wife last October but "he is tough."

The accident happened on Schmitt's property near Mesa Drive. Standing next to the tractor, Schmitt reached over to take out the keys but the tractor that was in gear accidentally started and moved forward. The tractor caught his right leg, rolled over it breaking the limb, and came to a stop on the man's right arm and torso.

He was pinned under the tractor for about 90 minutes before a girl on a bicycle riding by found him and alerted neighbors. They called 911 and the response was quick, with sheriff's department deputies, firefighters and a life flight helicopter all on scene.

Firefighters were dispatched to the scene at 5:16 p.m., said Capt. Clint Bray with the Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District. They managed to free the victim in about 30 minutes by inflating special air bags underneath the tractor and he was airlifted to hospital.

Schmitt was working on land, which used to be a walnut orchard.