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20 December 2013, 12:08
A paramedic has saved a woman from a burning building in Ipswich after hearing her screaming inside.
Ambulance crews from the East of England Ambulance Service were called to fire at a block of flats on Maidenhall Approach, Ipswich, at 8.56pm.
Paramedic Paul Gibson was first on scene, arriving in just three minutes. He was initially told that there was no-one inside the burning building, but he soon realised that this was not the case, and that a woman was trapped in one of the ground floor flats.
Approaching the window, which was open slightly, he could hear a woman coughing and screaming. He couldn’t see or hear the fire service so decided to take action himself and entered the smoke filled building.
Paul, who has been working for EEAST for seven years, said: “It was pitch black inside because of all the heavy smoke but I could tell the woman wasn’t far away. I managed to pick her up and get her back out of the flat, again through the window. Her breathing deteriorated so I immediately started giving her respiratory support. The fire service then arrived and helped me carry the woman to the waiting ambulance where she was rushed to Ipswich Hospital in a serious condition.
“Entering a burning building isn’t a natural thing to do, but I don’t know how I could have lived with myself had I not done so and the woman had died. I just did what anyone else would have done.”
A spokesperson for EEAST said: “Paul went beyond the call of duty and his action could well have saved this woman’s life. We’re very proud of him.”