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Last Updated: Sunday, 13 March, 2005, 14:39 GMT
Youths praised after fire rescue
Firefighters in Coventry have thanked a group of youths who helped them find a man in his 80s who was trapped in a smoke-filled sheltered housing block.

Three fire crews were called to Stretton Lodge in Knightlow Avenue, Willenhall, early on Saturday evening.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued the man, who was suffering from breathing in smoke.

Station officer Paul Watling said he was sorry the youths left the scene before firefighters could thank them.

"All too often stories appear in the press which reflect badly on young people," he said.

"It's great to report that the youths concerned went out of their way to alert us to the location of this fire and the fact that an elderly gentleman could be seen.

"This subsequently led to the rescue of the man gentleman from a heavily smoke-filled flat.

"Unfortunately, the youths left before we had a chance to thank them."


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