Man fight­ing for life af­ter res­cue from flat fire

Dad-of-two in a se­ri­ous con­di­tion af­ter be­ing plucked from burn­ing home

The Courier & Advertiser (Perth and Perthshire Edition) - - NEWS - PETER JOHN MEIKLEM pmeik­lem@the­courier.co.uk

A Brechin fa­ther-of-two is fight­ing for his life af­ter be­ing res­cued from his burn­ing flat by fire­fight­ers.

The man – named lo­cally as 51-yearold Ian ‘Gra­ham’ Ste­wart – was plucked from his ground-floor flat by fire­fight­ers in full breath­ing ap­pa­ra­tus and placed into one of two wait­ing am­bu­lances where paramedics worked to keep him alive.

Af­ter 40 min­utes Mr Ste­wart’s fam­ily were told “he had a pulse” and the man was rushed to Ninewells Hospi­tal in Dundee, where he is be­lieved to still be in a se­ri­ous con­di­tion.

Four fire en­gines, two am­bu­lances and sev­eral po­lice ve­hi­cles at­tended the blaze in the town’s River Street, which started shortly af­ter 4pm yes­ter­day.

A small crowd gath­ered as fire­fight­ers used two hosereels to ex­tin­guish the fire which gut­ted the ground floor flat and left the street smelling strongly of smoke. The win­dows of the flat were smashed dur­ing the res­cue and a po­lice van re­mained at the scene to se­cure the prop­erty. It is not yet known how the fire started.

A neigh­bour said: “It all hap­pened so fast. I was stand­ing in the kitchen and I could smell the smoke com­ing in through the door. I knew then it had to be a fire.”

He said the fire brigade res­cued Mr Ste­wart from the burn­ing build­ing be­fore ex­tin­guish­ing the flames. “The fire­fight­ers were amaz­ing,” he added.

Mr Ste­wart had lived in the Brechin prop­erty for around 10 years.

An­other neigh­bour said she knew Mr Ste­wart by sight and would see him on the lo­cal bus.

“The funny thing was I went up the road to the shop and when I came back 20 min­utes or so later, there were the fire en­gines and the po­lice were there too. It was all very quick.”

Cus­tomers in the Brid­gend Bar, only 100 me­tres or so from the fire, said they hadn’t seen the res­cue, but had gath­ered in the pub to find out more about what had hap­pened.

A po­lice cor­don around the burned out flat in River Street.

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