A Jehovah’s Witness’s night out ended with a fiery drama when he helped rescue a man from a burning building on his way home.
Ron Stanley and his wife Rebecca were driving back to their home in Godstone, Surrey, after a meal out on Friday when they spotted flames coming out of a house in Melfort Road, Thornton Heath.
The 38-year-old saw there were no firefighters at the scene so told his wife to pull over and he got out to see if he could help.
Mr Stanley, a tree surgeon, spoke to one of the residents who said there were two people on the first floor, including a diabetic.
The tree surgeon ran up the stairs, having to crawl underneath the smoke and avoid flames, and found a man lying on his back unconscious.
After dragging this man down the stairs to safety and was going to go and get the other man when the fire brigade turned up and took control of the situation.
Tree surgeon Mr Stanley said: "I was quite shocked as no one was going in the building. I made sure everyone was ok and it just dawned on me that there could be someone still in there. "When they said there were a couple of people in there I didn’t really think about anything else.
"If it was my house I would hope someone would do the same.
"Going up on the top landing there was flames coming out, smoke everywhere.
"The fire was massive and the last two of three steps I had to crawl to keep my head below the smoke.
"It was only afterwards that I thought it was a pretty scary situation but I am just glad they are ok."
Twenty firefighters from Norbury, Croydon and Woodside stations, attended the scene as well as paramedics and a doctor from LAS.
The man who was rescued by Mr Stanley was taken to hospital and another man, in his sixties, was rescued by the fire brigade.
He suffered a diabetic attack as he was carried out the house.
It took fire crews more than an hour to put the fire out, which is understood to have been started by a faulty washing machine.
Mr Stanley added: "I have massive respect for the fire brigade.
"They were absolutely incredible when they arrived and they did what they do best.
"I was worried I was going to be a hindrance to them."
- Council bosses call on the Chancellor to give Croydon more powers
- Man charged over Thornton Heath murder
- Mental health staff 'missed chances' to save mum killed by train
- Murder investigation launched in Thornton Heath after man 'tried to dump body in Thames' - two arrested
- High Court judge refuses Beddington incinerator campaigner permission to appeal