Two officers bravely risked their lives to extinguish a fire in a flat, saving a man’s life as well as the lives of his neighbours.
Basildon officers, Pc Paul Radley and Pc Rebecca Sheppard were carrying out routine enquiries in Vange on the morning of January 27 when a man shouted at them from a nearby building asking them to phone for the Fire Service.
The pair quickly updated our Force Control Room and requested for the Fire Service. They could see smoke coming from one of the flats within the building and rushed to the building to gain entry.
Unable to gain access, Paul and Rebecca had to smash a window and climb through. They quickly made their way to the flat and saw a man leave the smoke-filled property. The man was unable to make it clear if anyone else was inside.
Paul and Rebecca bravely entered the flat to see if anyone else was in there that needed help out of the building. Whilst risking their own lives, they were able to confirm that the flat was empty and ensure the welfare of the man who had been inside.
Whilst Rebecca was with the occupant, a resident handed her a fire extinguisher which she gave to Paul. Paul ran back into the flat and was able to extinguish the fire that had engulfed the kitchen and was spreading fast.
With the fire extinguished, the two officers then evacuated the neighbouring flats as a precaution until colleagues from the Fire Service attended and determined the cause of the fire to be a faulty appliance.
Paul and Rebecca both attended A&E as a precaution due to the amount of smoke they were subjected to and both officers were unharmed.
The pair’s bravery is testament to their dedication to protecting the public. Rebecca only recently joined the team in Basildon and was only on her second shift of independent patrol when the incident occurred.
Paul said: “I’m really glad we were in the right place at the right time and nobody came to any harm. I’m really proud of Rebecca who stepped up on what was only her second shift at Basildon, this wasn’t our usual run of the mill job.”
Rebecca said: “Everything happened so quickly and as Paul said, it was a really good outcome for everyone. We didn’t think twice about getting stuck in and ensuring everyone was safe and thankfully everyone was ok.”