Jul 18 2011 By Lorna Hughes
A HERO neighbour rescued a man trapped by a blaze.
David Keate burst into the 35-year-old’s home in Seymour Street, Tranmere, on Saturday night after a couch and mattress caught fire.
Mr Keate, 31, was saying goodbye to friends after a surprise birthday party for his dad at around 11pm on Saturday when he noticed flames and smoke coming from a first-floor flat next door.
His proud parents, Brian and Joyce, today said the brave builder’s only thought was for the safety of his neighbour.
Mrs Keate, 64, said: "One of the guests ordered a taxi so David was seeing them out when someone shouted ‘there’s a fire next door’.
"At first I thought they meant our house.
"It all happened so quickly. We did not know if anyone was in there. My son just ran in, grabbed the man and brought him outside."
Another guest at the family party called firefighters to the scene.
Neighbours said the man, named locally as Terry, was in shock and had to be stopped from going back inside the flat.
His living room was severely damaged by the fire and other rooms damaged by smoke.
Mr Keate’s dad Brian, 65, said: "It was like a flash of light and David did not even stop and think – he went straight in there and dragged him out.
"He was obviously disoriented and shocked and he kept trying to go back in. He got about halfway up the stairs before another one of our guests, Lenny, gave him a fireman’s lift back down.
"It was lucky we were having a party or we might never have gone outside and noticed the flames."
Merseyside fire service said the man had a "lucky escape".
A spokesman said: "Crews from Birkenhead and Bromborough attended and used breathing apparatus and a high pressure hose reel to put out the blaze.
"He was given oxygen by the fire crews, then taken to Arrowe Park hospital by ambulance for a precautionary check."
The man was released from hospital yesterday and is now thought to be staying with friends.