Two teenagers from Co Down have been praised for their brave actions in helping a man escape from his car before it went up in flames.
Sean Kelly, 18, and Joshua Allen, 17, spotted smoke coming from the grille of the man’s car in the village of Dromore shortly after 5pm yesterday and raised the alarm.
Joshua said: “We were on our way back from the shop. You could see smoke and a small bit of flames coming out of the car, I knew the engine was on fire.
“Sean and I were straight over to him and told him he needed to get out of the car. He had no idea what was going on.
“We got him out of the car and pushed it off the road. We got his stuff out of the car and popped the hood.
“I phoned the fire brigade and Sean and I redirected traffic to keep them away from the car until they came.
“The fire started to escalate, within I’d say about 20 seconds of popping the hood the engine was fully on fire.
“Thankfully the fire brigade got there before the petrol tank went up.”
Joshua guessed the man, whom they helped back to his house in the village with the items they helped rescue from the car, was in his fifties or sixties.
A video has been circulated on social media of part of the incident and praise has been heaped on Sean and Joshua for their brave actions.
Joshua commented: “It happened so quickly, natural instincts took over. You couldn’t stand by and watch that. He needed help. He didn’t have a clue that his engine was on fire. If we hadn’t done anything he could have died.”
Both Joshua and Sean play rugby at Banbridge RFC and are former students at Newbridge Integrated College. The boys will start Banbridge Tech next month.
Sean’s mother Lisa commented: “They were very brave and I’m very proud of them, but it could’ve went terribly wrong just as quickly.
“I’m a grateful mother that everyone is okay and safe.”