Heroes save two from burning
Published: June 6, 2008 | 7136th good news item since 2003
A HERO mum and son pulled an elderly woman and a man from a blazing house in Rhos on Sea.
Janet Hurd and her son David put fears for their own safety behind them when they spotted smoke billowing out of a neighbour’s house on Bodnant Road.
They ran into the smoke logged house to rescue a frail elderly woman and a man who was upstairs near the flames.
Janet said: “I could see something coming out of the window upstairs and I didn’t know if it was smoke or steam.”
She went over and shouted to her neighbours if there was anything wrong.
Then David came to help out.
He thought about using ladders he had but they were too short.
So without fear for his own safety David went into the house, the 81-year-old lady didn’t want to come out at first because she was not clothed properly.
But between them David and Janet persuaded her to come out.
“I went upstairs and the man was just sitting on the floor.
“I could see the smoke pouring off the bed and I was trying not to cough.
“I put a wet cloth over my mouth and went back upstairs and tried to put the fire out with water.
“The man said he was all right, I tried to grab his hand but I couldn’t get him to move.
“Then I could see the flames coming out of the bed I could feel the heat from the stairs and I shouted to everyone to get out of the house.”
Eventually the man, aged in his 50s, came down the stairs.
Firefighters from Colwyn Bay were on the scene soon after and extinguished the blaze, on Sunday morning.
The fire started in an upstairs bedroom and was thought to have been caused by discarded smoking materials shortly before 9am.
Although smoke detectors were fitted they were not working properly.
Janet said: “It just shows it doesn’t matter what you are wearing call the fire brigade out and stay out – you can replace clothes or objects, but not lives.”
Yesterday fire chiefs underlined the importance of having working smoking alarms and the dangers of smoking in bed.
Paul Whybro, North Wales Fire & Rescue Service Group Manager said: “The importance of having working smoke alarms in the home cannot be stressed enough.
“They are an invaluable early warning system against fire. I’m urging every householder in North Wales to ensure that they not only have smoke alarms fitted to their property but they regularly check them to ensure they are working properly and that batteries are fitted to them.”
Yesterday fire chiefs thanked David for his sterling efforts – but warned other people not to go into burning houses and to stay out until the fire brigade arrives.
Mr Whybro said: “It was a quick thinking neighbour who saw thick smoke coming from the property and went to investigate.
“On seeing the smoke coming from the first floor he immediately took action in getting the man and the elderly woman out safely.
“I want to commend him for his excellent work and that of another neighbour who alerted us.”