5:00pm Sunday 18th March 2012
BRIERLEY Hill firefighters sparked a flaming hot safety demo for a boy who took on a domestic blaze himself.
Members of Blue Watch at Brierley Hill Community Fire Station called at St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Mill Street, to meet pupil Harley Smith, aged 10, who dialled 999 after discovering a chip pan fire at his home.
Harley then tried in vain to tackle the flames by putting a damp towel over the pan but the cloth was too dry and also caught fire.
Watch commander Nick Lacey, from West Midlands Fire Service, said: “Harley did a great job in raising the alarm and telling us what had happened so that we could get everyone out safely and extinguish the blaze.
"While we understand the reasons why people might try to tackle some fires themselves, we cannot stress enough how important it is for people to get out, stay out, phone 999. The heat source can be turned off and people can close doors behind them as they exit - but only if it is safe to do so."
Harley's mum, who had fallen asleep upstairs, was rescued by firefighters wearing breathing apparatus who then extinguished the blaze.
One cat and three dogs were also rescued from the property, the kitchen suffered 50 per cent smoke damage and the property was extensively smoke damaged.
Both Harley and his mum were treated for the effects of smoke inhalation and taken to hospital.
Watch commander Lacey added: “It is vital that people leave the firefighting to us as trained professionals, because fire can take hold and spread so quickly, and the toxic smoke given off by flames is lethal.
“Thankfully, Harley and his mum managed to escape, but the outcome could have been so much worse, even fatal and others might not be quite so lucky.”
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