NHS heroes save man trapped in burning house

PUBLISHED: 07:30 12 August 2020

Kevin Sturgeon and Emma Barrell, who saved a man from a burning house in Ipswich. Picture: WEST SUFFOLK NHS FOUNDATION TRUST

Kevin Sturgeon and Emma Barrell, who saved a man from a burning house in Ipswich. Picture: WEST SUFFOLK NHS FOUNDATION TRUST

West Suffolk Foundation NHS Trust

Two NHS workers have received an award for saving the life of a man trapped in his Ipswich home by a fire.

Kevin Sturgeon and Emma Barrell, who work for the wheelchair services team for West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust at Chantry Park clinic in Ipswich, leaped into action after seeing the house on fire.

Their bravery and quick-thinking have now been recognised with certificates and a gift voucher from the Trust.

The incident happened in Peppercorn Road in Ipswich in March as Kevin, from Stowmarket, and Emma, who lives in Ipswich, were driving away from seeing a patient.

Kevin said: “We could see smoke and I said ‘Someone’s having a bonfire’. Then as we got round the corner and a bit closer we could see it was no bonfire but that the house was on fire.

“Then Emma saw a face in the window. We pulled up and I dialled for the fire service and she went into the house.

You may also want to watch:

“Emma was brilliant, She went in but she couldn’t get into the room where the man was because of the heat.

“I could see the man trying to get air at the window but he could only open it so far because of the safety lock.

“A neighbour had a ladder so I went up and tried, but I couldn’t open it from my side because of the locks. I tried to break the hinge with a hammer but it just bent, but I was able to then rip it off.”

The man was able to clamber down the ladder and was taken to hospital but was later discharged.

Kevin and Emma have now received a Putting You First award from the Trust.

Kevin said: “We were just in the right place at the right time. As far as we were able to find out we heard the man was OK, so that’s the most important thing.”

Gylda Nunn, integrated therapies manager at the Trust said Kevin and Emma displayed true courage to help save the man’s life.

She said: “We are so incredibly proud of the courage displayed by both Kevin and Emma. Their quick thinking and immediate action helped save a man’s life. They went above and beyond the call of duty which is isn’t surprising as they’re both such dedicated and caring individuals.”

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ipswich Star. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Ipswich Star