Heroes save man from South Elmsall fire

Two men saved man's life after dragging man from fire - there was loads of smoke coming out of 104a Westfield Lane S Elmsall, and Jamie Brand 18 (left), and Steve Wheelan, 29, dragged him from the house.
Two men saved man's life after dragging man from fire - there was loads of smoke coming out of 104a Westfield Lane S Elmsall, and Jamie Brand 18 (left), and Steve Wheelan, 29, dragged him from the house.
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TWO brave men saved a man from death by fighting through his smoke-filled home and carrying him to safety.

Eighteen-year-old Jamie Brand and 29-year-old Steve Wheeler, both of Westfield Lane, South Elmsall, risked their own lives on Saturday evening.

Crowds gathered outside the man’s home, also on Westfield Lane, at around 8.30pm when plumes of smoke could be seen billowing out of the front door.

Dad-of-one Mr Wheeler instinctively ran straight into the house and desperately tried to find the man inside, but the smoke was so thick he could not see.

He ran outside to catch his breath and ventured in a second time with the help of a torch on a mobile phone.

Mr Wheeler said: “I could see him just laying on the settee and he was not moving so I just dragged him across the floor.

“I knew I needed to get him out.”

Jamie also ran into the house and helped Mr Wheeler carry the man out on to the pavement.

The former Minsthorpe Community College student said: “I didn’t think he was breathing so I was banging him on his back when he coughed and spluttered up a load of black stuff from his nose and mouth.”

The man, who has not been named, was rushed to hospital by paramedics suffering from smoke inhalation.

Jamie said: “If we hadn’t have gone in when we did I don’t think he would still be alive.

“I don’t feel like a hero, I am just glad I could help.”

Mr Wheeler added: “I just did what I hope anyone else would have done in that situation. I have an eight-year-old daughter and just like to think that someone would do the same for her.”

Nathan Whiteman, 16, and Liam Shaw, 27, from South Elmsall, also helped carry the man from the house.

Crews from South Elmsall, Pontefract and Adwick Stations attended the blaze.

Initial investigations show a chip pan may have caused the fire.

Crew commander Simon Thomson, of South Elmsall Station, said: “We encourage residents to ensure they have smoke alarms fitted and offer free home fire safety checks.”

For more information about fire alarms and other fire safety advice call 0800 587 4536.