Birmingham & Black Country

PCs save Birmingham family from flat fire

Pretoria Road
Image caption The family had huddled on a rain ledge to flee the fire in Pretoria Road

Two police officers have been praised for rescuing a family of four from a burning flat.

PCs Martyn Carpenter and James Merson were first on the scene after being alerted by a member of the public.

They fought through thick smoke at the home in Bordesley Green, Birmingham, on Saturday and extinguished the fire before rescuing the residents who were huddled outside on a rain ledge.

Ch Insp Baljeet Sidhu said the officers showed "incredible bravery".

The pair carried four people from the roof, through the flat and out of the door.

PC Carpenter, 36, saved a disabled teenage girl by carrying her through a window.

'Get them out'

She was on the makeshift roof of the shop below the first-floor flat when he "dragged her through the window".

He said: "I think the adrenaline takes over. It wasn't until we got them out that you actually kind of take a step back and think about what you've just done.

"At the time your priority is to get them out.

"It feels a bit surreal. We just did what anybody would have done in the same situation."

PC Merson, 38, said: "We had to put out a bit of a fire again which had started up in the corner by the radiator. I put that out basically with my foot."

The blaze broke out at 09:00 GMT. The cause is being investigated.

The family and the officers were taken to hospital to be checked over.

Mr Sidhu added: "These officers put their own lives at risk to save others.

"Without a thought for their own safety they acted swiftly to get the family out of the flat."

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