Essex

Colchester petrol station assistant saves burning man

Britannia Service Station Image copyright Google
Image caption A man poured fuel over himself and set it alight at Britannia Service Station on Mersea Road in Colchester

A man doused himself with fuel at a service station and set himself alight in front of one of the staff members.

The incident happened on Thursday morning at Britannia Service Station on Mersea Road in Colchester.

The man told the sales assistant on duty, Bijay Pandey, that he was going to kill himself.

"He poured what smelled like diesel over himself and pulled a lighter from his coat but the flames were not large so I put them out," Mr Pandey said.

"It was a bit frightening but he fell on the floor, rolled and screamed when I think the flames touched his skin and that also helped put the flames out.

"He looked like he was in his 50s and had a beard. I called for an ambulance and the police."

The East of England Ambulance Service said: "We were called at 10:20 BST with reports of a patient with burns in Mersea Road, Colchester.

"We sent one ambulance, a rapid response vehicle, an ambulance officer and the Essex and Hertfordshire Air Ambulance.

"One man was taken to Broomfield Hospital by land ambulance."

A police spokesman said: "We were called to concerns for the safety of a man in Mersea Road, Colchester.

"We attended and found a man injured. He has been taken to hospital with injuries to his arms and hands.

"We do not believe anyone else was involved."

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