London fire crew praised for saving two lives in two hours in Whitechapel

07:00 14 August 2012

Four London firefighters have been praised after rescuing a woman from a blaze and then saving the life of a man who had collapsed in the street—all in the space of two hours.

Now the crew stationed at Bethnal Green in London’s East End could be in line for a Fire Brigade Lifesavers’ commendation.

They were called to the blaze in a block of flats in Brady Street, Whitechapel, where the woman was trapped in her balcony on the fifth floor.

They put out the blaze as she was being treated at the scene for the effects of breathing smoke and for asthma.

It was while they were leaving they noticed a man 200 yards further along the street lying collapsed on the pavement.

Firefighters Gareth Jones, Dave Egan, Dave Dighton and Bill Holland grabbed the defibrillator life-saving kit that’s kept on board fire-engines and ran towards the man. A passer-by told them the man had collapsed holding his chest.

They asked a police officer to call the ambulance that had been at the fire to return.

Meanwhile, the firefighters started resuscitation while the ambulance was on its way back.

Just four minutes later, the man showed signs of recovery.

The crew’s actions last month drew praise this week from the Fire Brigade’s Tower Hamlets senior commander, Bruce Epsly.

“I am in no doubt the actions of the crew saved this man’s life,” he said.

“This shows how alert the four firefighters were—saving the woman from the fire and then the man in the street. It also shows how important the first-aid training is.”

They were one of four crews originally called to the blaze from Bethnal Green, Whitechapel and Old Kent Road fire-stations at lunchtime on July 25, who had the blaze under control in just seven minutes from arrival.

Every fire-engine in London is equipped with new high-tech first aid equipment, including defibrillators. Crews are trained in using it when they are the first on the scene, especially where victims cannot be easily reached.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London news

Tuesday, May 5, 2015
(Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

A group of football fans on a train from Euston to Stoke are wanted by police after they shouted abuse at fellow travellers - including a young boy in a wheelchair.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Finsbury Park Tube (Pic: Sunil060902 (CC))

A person was killed after being hit by a Victoria Line train at Finsbury Park this morning.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015
It's just controlled falling, really isn't it? [Image from YouTube]

If you’ve ever watched diving on the television and thought “well, that looks easy, this video is for you”.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015
[Image from Google StreetView]

Stockwell Road and Brixton Road have reopened after a man on a roof was talked down by police.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Robert Gurling

Romford man Robert Gurling has abducted his three-year-old son from his foster parents, and police need the public’s help to find the pair.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Limited edition Ophir Gin goodies up for grabs!

Opihr Oriental Spiced Gin is a unique style of London Dry Gin created at G&J one of the world’s oldest gin distillers, using exotic botanicals, herbs and spices.

Read more
A swastika daubed on a poster promoting Simon Marcus.

Conservatives in Hampstead and Kilburn are calling in the police over anti-Semitic graffiti found daubed on posters promoting parliamentary candidate Simon Marcus in Queen’s Park.