Officer Claudio Salgado was heading to work last Tuesday when he spotted smoke and flames coming from a van near the Interstate 55 northbound ramp to Interstate 94.
He immediately rushed to keep traffic away from the van.
Then he noticed the van's owner trying to remove tools and oxygen tanks from the vehicle.
Salgado pulled mechanic Peter O'Hagan to safety moments before the van erupted in flames.
"He was concerned about his tools, and he's carrying an oxygen tank, and I thought, 'Hmm, you carry an oxygen tank, nothing good is going to happen near the fire.' So the decision I made, thank you God it was a good result," Salgado said.
"I probably wouldn't have been here if it wasn't for the gentleman here," O'Hagan said.
O'Hagan's wife was not with him that day. She was injured in a separate incident.