Eyewitness tells how brave woman pulled pensioner from Fareham fire

TWO teenagers called 999 as a woman pulled an 84-year-old from a fire and doused him with a garden hose.

Tuesday, 29th March 2016, 12:17 pm
Updated Saturday, 2nd April 2016, 8:48 am
Firefighters tackle a blaze in a garage in Highlands Road, Fareham on Sunday,March 27, 2016 Picture: [email protected] Photos by Darren Ford

Exploding bottles broke against walls in the garage in Highlands Road, Fareham, as smoke and flames poured out.

Tragically the pensioner died in hospital on Monday around eight hours after the blaze on Sunday afternoon.

Steve Thomas, 49, of Whiteley, was driving with his wife Becci visiting his parents nearby when he saw the smoke.

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He said: ‘It was horrific, absolutely awful.

‘My parents live in Frosthole Crescent, we were just going up there for Easter afternoon.

‘We saw the smoke coming out what I thought was the house.

‘We pulled up outside the house, there was two young girls who had called the services.

‘There was a woman who had pulled the guy from the garage and got the garden house out and basically put him out.

‘All his clothes, everything, had burned off when I got there.

‘There were explosions from the garage.

‘He was trying to talk to us, saying his wife was in the house.

‘There was a phone number in the window, we rang and it was the daughter’s number, she was able to give us the number to the keypad to get in.

‘It was like something out of a horror film.

‘The woman who was there, she ran into the fire to pull him out, it was amazing.

‘She got taken away with smoke inhalation and was very badly shaken.

‘The kids next door they were young, they managed to ring the services, they were probably 13 or 14.

‘Apparently he was in there using a blowtorch but he had so many inflammable materials in there it went up.

‘It was like glass jars that were firing up and smashing against the walls and the smoke and the flames, it was a massive fire.’

The blaze happened at 4.10pm in Highlands Road, Fareham, on Sunday.

The pensioner was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital and died at 12.45am on Monday.

Hampshire police is investigating the incident but it is not being treated as suspicious.