Hero dad rushed into burning bungalow to rescue man after hearing cries from inside

A dad-of-two has been praised for rushing into a burning bungalow in a bid to rescue a man trapped inside.

Dave Hughes, 45, was on his way to work when he spotted a fire at a property in Langland Drive, Blurton on Friday night.

He stopped to check the fire and used water butts he was carrying in his van to extinguish part of the blaze.

But as he was doing so, he heard a voice coming from inside, and with little regard for his own safety he entered the bungalow in an attempt to save the man.

Dave managed to locate the occupant in a room to the rear of the property, but was unable to go further due to the thick smoke.

Another man who had stopped at the scene also attempted to reach the occupant but was similarly unsuccessful.

Fortunately, firefighters arrived at the bungalow within seconds, and using breathing apparatus they were able to extract the man, who was then taken to hospital.

A woman in her 50s, from the local area, has been arrested on suspicion of arson.

Dave, who lives in Blurton with his wife Emma and their two children, says instinct took over when he saw the fire.

Dave Hughes
Dad-of-two Dave Hughes used water butts he carried in his van to extinguish part of the blaze

The Network Rail worker said: “I was on my way to work, and as I was driving along Langland it seemed to get really foggy. But then I realised it wasn’t fog, it was a bungalow on fire.

“For my work I carry these 20 litre water butts in the van. So when I saw the fire, instinct just took over. I grabbed two of the water butts and used them to put out the fire on the cladding outside.

“As I was doing that I heard a male voice calling out from inside. So I opened the front door and walked through the living room. The voice was coming from a bedroom at the back of the bungalow. But I couldn’t get through the door because the smoke was too thick, so I had to go back outside. Another man tried as well, but he couldn’t get through the door either.

“But within 30 seconds the fire brigade turned up. I think they had breathing apparatus on, and they just took a few seconds to bring the man out.

“I was checked for smoke inhalation, but to be honest, I mostly felt agitated because I thought maybe I could have done more.

“But I’m just glad that the man was okay and nobody was seriously hurt.”

After leaving his details with the police, Dave continued on his journey, and was only slightly late for work.

Emma says she is relieved that her husband managed to avoid harm during his late-night heroics.

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She said: “When Dave told me what had happened I was just really shocked that he’d done that. I was scared for him.”

Fire investigators and police forensics officers remained at the scene of the blaze on Saturday.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Staffordshire Police on 101 or via social media referring to incident 888 of April 30.

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