South Scotland

Stranraer pensioner saved from flat blaze

Fire engine
Image caption Two fire engines were sent to the scene but the pensioner had already been rescued by police

The fire service has paid tribute to the quick actions of a police officer who rescued a Stranraer pensioner from his burning flat on Sunday night.

Two fire engines were sent to the scene in Foundry Lane at about 21:20.

They were met by police officers, one of whom had forced entry to the heavily smoke-logged ground floor flat and rescued its 76-year-old occupant.

Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue Service praised the officer's "early and courageous intervention".

Emergency services were called out to the block of six flats on Sunday night following reports of a fire alarm sounding and signs of smoke and flames coming from the building.

Fire crews arrived at the scene to find that police had already rescued the man living in the property.

He was taken by ambulance to hospital for treatment but the fire service said his injuries had been "undoubtedly minimised" by the police officer's actions.

Firefighters using breathing apparatus and hose jets put out the fire and assisted one further person to safety as they tried to exit their upper floor flat via a smoke-filled communal stairwell.

Following the incident, the fire and rescue service issued a reminder to members of the public about the dangers of smoking in the home and the use of portable heaters.

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