Episode 9 Real Rescues


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Episode 9

Nick Knowles and Louise Minchin follow the work of the emergency services. Skateboarders film themselves rescuing a family trapped in a blazing flat.


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Today on Real Rescues, the skateboarders who became heroes.

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-We can't get out.

-Why not?

-I can't get out the stairs.

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I can't breathe. There's too much smoke.

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-We've got you.

-It's all right. Nice and slowly.

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What happens when a valuable farm animal gets into trouble?

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We meet the rural rescue team who come to their aid.

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Hello. We are at the South Western Ambulance control room.

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The team here are on call all day every day to answer 999 emergencies.

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They take over 1,000 calls a day.

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They're really busy. We won't disturb them when they're on an emergency call.

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When two skateboarders headed out with a video camera hoping to get some great action shots,

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they ended up with a dramatic film, but not to do with skateboarding.

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It starred them rescuing a family from a burning house.

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Is anybody in there?

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'Leaving the camera on a car bonnet, they rush towards the building.

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'Smoke is pouring out of an upstairs flat.

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'Their thoughts immediately turn to anyone trapped in there.'

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I thought, "Well, this ain't burnt toast or anything.

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"I've got to get on to the phone. There's someone in danger here."

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By the time he'd got on to the fire crew,

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the window had gone and it was billowing out.

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'Spencer, wearing the striped jacket,

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'alerts the neighbours downstairs.

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'They've been told everyone is out, so Dave passes on the information.'

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'The fire is rapidly escalating but no-one knows what's going on inside.

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'There's a family in the flat on the left -

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'a mother, Tracey, and her two boys.

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'Her neighbours, fleeing their flat, yell to call 999.

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'She makes the call, unaware that smoke is filling the hallway.'

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As I opened the door, my smoke alarm kicked in.

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There was a lot of smoke in the communal hallway.

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He just screamed at me to phone 999.

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I shut my front door,

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screamed at my children to get some shoes and a coat on.

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I then dialled 999.

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'But the fire is waiting for no-one.

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'Thick toxic smoke is at Tracey's door, blocking her escape route.'

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I got a duvet to put over the children's heads

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to stop smoke getting into their lungs.

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I tried to open the front door.

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A blast of heat and smoke knocked me off my feet.

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I slammed it shut and realised there was no way I'd get out the front door.

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'Tracey is terrified.

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'Even now, the skateboarders are unaware she's trapped.'

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'It's really engulfed now, and the next thing'

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we hear the lady from next door screaming.

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-We can't get out.

-Why not?

-I can't get down the stairs.

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I can't breathe. There's too much smoke!

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'The video shows Spencer's instinctive reaction.

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'He goes upstairs, desperately trying to find her door.'

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As soon as I got to the level of the top floor, my head ran into smoke.

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I couldn't see. I took a breath of air and dropped down.

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There was a pocket of air. I shouted, "Where are you?"

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I couldn't find the door. I knew if I stayed, that would be me laying there.

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'The smoke forced Spencer back.

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'He stops anyone with thoughts of trying.'

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TRACEY: 'I did start to panic, but when the kids are there,'

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you just think, "I want them out."

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I just said to keep calm, get as far away from the smoke as possible,

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and we'll get your children out.

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'They can't get in via the stairs. They have to think of another rescue plan and work quickly.

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'The fire is getting more ferocious by the minute.'

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That situation gets even more dramatic. We'll have more later.

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We saw how Spencer couldn't breathe or see anything.

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These goggles replicate those conditions to train firefighters.

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Steve, you are a former firefighter. Now you train fire safety.

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-What are these for?

-To train firefighters

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in the early stages, to get them past that fear

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of being obscured and in darkness.

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You at home will be able to see what it looks like.

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We've got them on Dan's camera. We prepared it earlier. You'll see what I can see.

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-Your vision should be quite good at the moment.

-Yeah.

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You're going to change it?

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-I'll do that now.

-Goodness me! That's really scary.

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It should now be quite obscure.

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I can see two lights on the cameras.

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-Nick, where are you?

-I'm in this corner.

-I can hear people around me.

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I can't see my feet or my hands. Where are you, Nick?

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GASPS

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-That's how close you were!

-I can't see you.

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I can't even see your shadow.

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-It can't really be that lack of vision?

-Unfortunately, it can.

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Depending on what's burning, the visibility can be zero.

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I could see lights, but does it get worse than that?

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You say to practise getting out of your house. I couldn't see my feet.

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-It can be that bad or worse?

-It can, unfortunately.

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We tell people to get as low as possible, below the smoke layer.

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This is truly life-saving. I had no idea how to find Nick, but you have special ways of finding people.

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Yes. Firefighters have techniques for searching a room and being safe.

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You've got a story about a little girl who was hiding. How did you find her?

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We had a house fire with two persons reported, a boy and a girl.

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Mother outside screaming, very distressed.

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We quickly located the boy in the bedroom.

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We did an extensive search, couldn't find the little girl.

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Eventually, she was located hiding under the kitchen sink.

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-You would never be able to see or even perhaps hear her.

-No.

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-Life-saving stuff.

-Yes.

-I hope I never have to do that.

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-Nick, I had no idea at all.

-Absolutely extraordinary.

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This morning, we were joking that Louise always checks in a hotel the map of how to get out.

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Now that I've seen that, I think I will.

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I'm going to talk to Nick McGuinness over in the corner here, I hope.

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The other thing that's made me think - smoke alarms!

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Please check you've got one and make sure the battery's working.

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I took mine off cos I was cooking sausages and I just realised I forgot to put it back.

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-Now, I'm going to talk to Nick, if he's not on a call...?

-No.

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I'm fascinated by the detective work these guys use.

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-You got a call from a girl that was at a party?

-That's right. She woke up in a car.

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Morning after the night before. No idea where she was.

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We exhausted our normal measures for finding where someone is.

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Tracing her mobile, but she wasn't where it might be registered...

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She couldn't tell you where she was because of the things she'd indulged in confused her.

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-And she was ill.

-She wasn't in a position to give us the information.

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We ended up getting her e-mail address and password,

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logging in to her Facebook account and finding out where the party was.

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-From the conversation?

-Yeah.

-Whose idea was that?

-One of our call takers.

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We got the location and got her to hospital.

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-Social networking is beyond me but these guys know about that too. Thanks very much.

-No worries.

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Cases involving sick children are upsetting for all emergency crews.

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They're trained, but even the most experienced paramedic

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would find it tough if the call-out is to a member of their own family.

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'Paramedic Cathy Baker is driving under blue lights to a school.

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'She's done it many times before, but this time it's very different.

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'Cathy's racing to help her own nine-year-old nephew.'

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It does increase the heart rate, which is normal for any job,

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but even more so when it's a member of the family.

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I want to know is he OK and talking when I get there?

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Which entrance do we need to come to? ..Clarendon Road.

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That's fine. OK.

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We're at Highcliff, so we'll see you in a few minutes.

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Cheers. Bye.

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'Cathy and her colleague Steve are told James has had a seizure.

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'Cathy knows it's his second in a few days.

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'They find James being looked after by his mother, Cathy's sister Sharon, as well as the school nurse.

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'He got a funny taste in his mouth, his speech started to slur and his legs went wobbly.

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'Knowing something was very wrong, his teacher quickly got him outside.

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'At least James has now recovered enough to walk to the ambulance.

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'His mum Sharon was out shopping when the school called.'

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It was the school to say that he'd had another episode.

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Could I come as quickly as possible? For a second, I was just stood there, frozen.

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'It was a great comfort to Sharon that her sister was in the nearest ambulance and on her way.'

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The relief when somebody who knows what they're talking about comes through that door.

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It takes the pressure off you.

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-Do you still feel a bit wobbly?

-Yeah.

-Got that funny taste...?

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'The sisters are both very worried because it's happened before.'

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'James had a funny turn on the Tuesday. He was ashen.'

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His lips started to turn blue, his face went to one side, he was dribbling and couldn't talk.

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'I thought he was choking and was shouting had he eaten anything?'

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He kept shaking his head. Eventually, he came out of that.

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'Cathy knows that her nephew will have to endure many tests.

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'They start them in the ambulance.

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'The first is to check his blood sugar levels.'

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Little sharp scratch. Ow!

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It's all done. Good lad.

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Amazed by it now, aren't you?

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'Cathy's thoughts are that James might be suffering from epilepsy.'

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The things we're concerned about this episode

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are epilepsy, but also cardiac arrhythmias we'd be worried about.

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Or a fainting episode, which is the simplest answer.

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We're hoping that it's mainly that.

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But the cardiac arrhythmia can develop later on

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and people are known to die from sudden adult death syndrome,

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or sudden child, for no reason, and find out it's cardiac arrhythmia.

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Shall I put some stickies on you, see what your heart's doing?

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This is going to feel a bit cold when these bits go on you.

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They've got a little bit of gel on there.

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So it might be a little bit cold.

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If you get a funny taste, let me know.

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'James described a funny taste in his mouth and tingling in his nose

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'on both occasions.'

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That would ring alarm bells that it could be an "aura",

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which sometimes epileptic people have as a pre-warning that they're going to have a seizure.

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'Cathy gets James to tell her as much as possible.'

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When it happened, did you have any pains in your head?

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Well, I was feeling quite warm. I just felt really weird.

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Really hot and I felt a bit shaky.

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-You didn't have any pain anywhere?

-No.

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'They're at A&E. James will see a doctor and, hopefully,

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'find out what's causing these mysterious seizures.'

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We'll come back to James, to see if the medical detectives can get to the bottom of his fainting.

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Still to come on Real Rescues,

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'the car that bounced off seven vehicles at 70 miles an hour.

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'Looking at it, it's a wonder anyone got out alive.'

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Try and keep your head still, mate.

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And Annette's having a routine day

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'until she looks out the window and sees her car in flames.'

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I pulled the car into the drive. There was no warning. Nothing.

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Earlier, we watched Spencer and Dave trying to rescue a family from their burning flat.

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Flames are pouring out the window, the family's trapped. There's no time. They have to find a way out.

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'As the fire rages,

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'only a door separates Tracey and her two boys from the flames.

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'She's doing all she can to keep them all safe.'

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I went into my living room, the furthest point I could get from the front door,

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shutting all the fire doors.

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I grabbed some towels and shoved them under the door

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to stop the smoke because both my children were coughing badly.

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'Spencer and Dave are joined by a third man, who suggests another way of getting the family out.'

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-Drop the kids out the window.

-Yeah. Drop the children out to us!

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'The first window doesn't open fully.'

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The side window's bigger!

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TRACEY: 'I knew I could lower the children down by their arms.'

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I could get them as low as possible before I let go.

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'Tracey's boys are aged three and 11, and it's a long drop.

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'It's going to take a bit of nerve, but they have no choice.'

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It's all right.

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-We've got you.

-Come down...

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'I could see his little legs.'

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I thought it's such a little child, but they dropped him down and we put our arms up.

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'I just grabbed hold of whatever I could. I grabbed his foot.

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'Then grabbed his body and put him to the floor as safely as I could.'

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Come on, mate. You can do it, no problem. Hang by your hands.

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'Adam's safe. Now it's Robert's turn.'

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'He was older, but very hesitant.'

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He knew the dangers.

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'It was a very high window, so I encouraged him,

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'reassured him that we're going to grab him.'

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You won't even know that you've dropped. Go on!

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Come on.

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Let go, mate. Let go. Let go.

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All right. And you?

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'They think it's just Tracey to go.

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'As they try to persuade her to jump suddenly something else appears.'

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The cats! They were lethal. All the claws coming out!

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'I'm an animal lover. I've got three cats of my own.'

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All part of the family. They've all got to come down safely.

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'Tracey can't put off her own escape any longer.'

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They were shouting, "Now you! Now you!"

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I was a bit reluctant, but I thought I hadn't got a choice.

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I climbed onto the window sill and then I heard the heavenly noise

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of the fire engine turning into the road!

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I climbed back down off the window sill and said, "I'll wait."

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'The firefighters set about tackling the fire.

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'Two of them helped Tracy down one of their ladders.

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'Station commander Geoff Quince was impressed by the rescuers.'

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The skateboarders and neighbours that helped the children and cats

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did a sterling job!

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They didn't endanger themselves but took really good actions,

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which saved us an awful lot of time.

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It made the scene a lot safer

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and enabled us to focus on the firefighting.

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'Tracey can't believe the lengths Spencer and Dave went to to get her children out.'

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'The boys that came over and helped'

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and another passer-by, did decide to try and do something.

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'They could have saved my children's lives.'

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'We dealt with the situation as best we could.'

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Then we went off and had a skate.

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SPENCER: We had a thank-you from the father. He came away from work.

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We were still at the skatepark.

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'He was happy and said thank you for what we'd done for the children.'

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And the cats. Don't forget the cats.

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Spencer and Dave have joined us for a chat off the back of that.

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-You're famous now, aren't you?

-Seem to be. A little bit!

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-You bunged that on YouTube. How many hits?

-7,500 hits now.

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Why did you film it? Not everybody walks around with a camera.

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-Then to have the presence of mind to stick it on a bonnet and leave it running.

-We're skateboarders.

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-Always got a camera with us.

-Is that right?

-Yeah.

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-Saw the fire and got the camera out.

-Do you record everything?

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Don't answer that! Realised what a dodgy question that was.

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What did the guys say at the scene? The fire brigade come piling in.

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They saw what the scenario was, what was going on.

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As soon as they realised that people were out the building,

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apart from the lady, they made sure we were safe then got on with what they had to do.

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-You wandered back to the skatepark?

-Yeah. We did.

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Let me go back over that. You've got kids.

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I've got four.

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With this little one dangling over your head, what are you thinking?

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I would hope that someone would do the same for my child.

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That child doesn't know what's going on. He's got no fear.

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And it was up to us as citizens to make sure he's safe and gets out.

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-It wasn't just the children.

-No!

-The dangerous catch was this one.

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The white cat, followed by a black cat as well.

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Yeah, that was a bit of an ordeal.

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It was having these claws clamp on to you, out of nowhere.

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-Tore me to pieces.

-They do!

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I did have a couple of claw marks, if I remember rightly.

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When the dad found out, he came to find you, didn't he?

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He did. He came and found us. He was really grateful for what we'd done.

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He was so happy he actually bunged us a drink.

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So we went home and had a drink. It turned out to be a good day.

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Good work! Listen, guys, do you ever wear a hoodie?

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-No.

-Once in a blue moon, I do wear a hoodie.

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Don't judge people just cos they wear hoodies! Thanks very much.

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Now, if you've got any footage of a rescue, why not let us know? Louise.

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Annette popped out with the kids, came back home, parked on the drive then started to cook dinner.

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A normal day, until one of her children looked outside

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to find a real emergency unfolding on the driveway.

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'The firefighters are moving swiftly through the traffic.

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'It's been reported a car fire is next to houses and other cars.

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'An entire street could be in danger of going up.'

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'Car fires. They're full of plastics.'

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It will become a really intense fire.

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'Also, next to a house, the heat and the smoke is going to impinge.

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'What would have been a small fire becomes a very large fire.

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'The smoke's full of poisonous fumes.'

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A few lungfuls make you very ill.

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I'd say it's there!

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-Just outside the house!

-In attendance. Car well alight.

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'They arrived to find the front of the car engulfed in flames.

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'The fire's spread to the fence. The Land Rover is next in line.

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'Kitted-up in breathing apparatus to cope with the toxic fumes,

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'Liam Barry and Ben Carter aim a hose to stop the spread.

0:22:310:22:35

'The family have been told to keep inside

0:22:350:22:39

'until the fire is out and the smoke is cleared.

0:22:390:22:43

'The flames are knocked back but poisonous smoke is billowing out.'

0:22:430:22:49

There are people in the house. I told them to stay in.

0:22:520:22:56

The fumes are obviously quite dangerous.

0:22:560:22:59

'They get the bonnet up and damp down the engine.'

0:22:590:23:04

There's still smoke. It's not just steam.

0:23:040:23:07

They're going to make sure it's out. A lot of heat built up in there.

0:23:070:23:11

The roof lining's come down. The dashboard's melted.

0:23:110:23:16

'While they work, the crew look for signs of how the fire got going.'

0:23:180:23:23

Has it recently been used? There's a child's car seat in there.

0:23:230:23:28

They've just come back and there's a fault with it.

0:23:280:23:31

Need an open mind. Start investigating in a minute.

0:23:310:23:35

'The firefighters have worked quickly and efficiently.

0:23:350:23:39

'All the time, the family have been kept safe behind closed doors.'

0:23:390:23:44

That close to the house, that could have been quite nasty.

0:23:440:23:48

'Now the smoke and steam have dwindled to a safe level,

0:23:480:23:52

'Adrian goes indoors to speak to the owner, Annette.'

0:23:520:23:56

-Is everybody OK?

-Shaking.

0:23:560:23:59

'She's stunned by what's happened.'

0:23:590:24:02

I'd been out. I came home, pulled onto the drive, put the dinner on.

0:24:020:24:07

Nothing unusual at all.

0:24:070:24:10

My foster daughter looked out the window and said the car's on fire.

0:24:100:24:14

I looked out the window. There was no warning. There was nothing!

0:24:140:24:19

I'm sorry. I'm a bit shaky about it. There was no warning, nothing.

0:24:190:24:25

'Annette is a foster mum and often has young children in the car.'

0:24:250:24:29

What warning would there have been if I'd been driving? What if I'd had a baby in the back...?

0:24:290:24:36

-That's what makes it shocking.

-Yes.

0:24:360:24:38

'It's upsetting looking at the burnt-out wreck.

0:24:380:24:42

'Adrian reassures her it's unlikely to have happened on the road.'

0:24:420:24:46

If you'd been driving, you would have had some indication.

0:24:460:24:51

The engine would have spluttered or you'd have smelled it.

0:24:510:24:55

It's very rare, when you're driving along, does a car just suddenly go.

0:24:550:25:01

It might have been something when you pulled up

0:25:010:25:05

and went in, that you weren't aware of cos it was only just starting.

0:25:050:25:09

Thank goodness you're OK. That's the main thing.

0:25:090:25:14

'Thanks to the firefighters' swift action,

0:25:140:25:16

'there's relatively little harm done to the property.'

0:25:160:25:22

This fence is...will need replacing.

0:25:220:25:26

The next-door neighbour's car is fine. My friend's car is fine.

0:25:260:25:30

There's damage here.

0:25:300:25:32

The window's going to need replacing.

0:25:350:25:38

When I think what could have happened, it's amazing.

0:25:380:25:43

Gary, you're a road safety officer. Annette wasn't even in her car!

0:25:450:25:50

-That can happen quite easily?

-Yes it can.

0:25:500:25:54

When a car's parked, heat will build up, but there's always a fault.

0:25:540:25:59

-This sort of thing?

-Yeah. You're surrounded by wires.

0:25:590:26:03

These get pinched, and you've got fuel lines and all sorts of stuff.

0:26:030:26:08

With this age of car, although it's partly electronic,

0:26:080:26:12

-we'd disconnect the battery to stop that side of the fire.

-OK.

0:26:120:26:16

-Everything stops at that point.

-And we treat it as a normal fire.

0:26:160:26:21

-Fuel is obviously a problem.

-Yeah.

-You have a "running fuel" fire?

0:26:210:26:25

Perhaps you've hit something in the road. It's ruptured your fuel tank.

0:26:250:26:31

Fuel starts pouring out, or you've parked on a hill and it runs away.

0:26:310:26:36

That's a running fuel fire. It's pouring down the road.

0:26:360:26:40

You can see how that's incredibly dangerous.

0:26:400:26:43

You've got a different car here, a much more modern car.

0:26:430:26:48

It can cause problems, can't it?

0:26:480:26:50

What we do now is work within the electrical system of the car.

0:26:500:26:55

Why would we cut this roof off when, with the press of one button,

0:26:550:27:00

we can get to the people inside?

0:27:000:27:02

So we had to change the way we deal with car fires and RTCs

0:27:020:27:07

as cars have evolved.

0:27:070:27:09

We now use the systems of the car to help us, not to hinder us.

0:27:090:27:14

My car is not as sophisticated as this, but a lot of it is electric.

0:27:140:27:19

I'm worried that I could get locked in. Could that happen?

0:27:190:27:23

Well, no, but you've got to remember to do what you normally do.

0:27:230:27:28

What people do if they smell smoke is pull over and stop.

0:27:280:27:32

You've got to do what you normally do. Don't panic.

0:27:320:27:35

-With me, I have to take the keys out.

-As with this one.

0:27:350:27:40

Most of them have a button you can press to unlock as well, but you've got to remember to do that.

0:27:400:27:46

-What about putting your hand brake on?

-Yes.

0:27:460:27:50

I have seen incidents where we're chasing a car fire down the road.

0:27:500:27:55

The wires had shorted, the electric motor started and they'd left it in gear without the hand brake on.

0:27:550:28:01

This is probably stupid, but as soon as I saw smoke from my bonnet,

0:28:010:28:06

-I'd go round and open the bonnet.

-No.

0:28:060:28:09

That's the worst thing you could do.

0:28:090:28:12

Firefighters wear the protective clothing.

0:28:120:28:15

If you open it up, you get air into it and increase...

0:28:150:28:19

-That fire would just...

-You're drawing it towards yourself.

0:28:190:28:24

Get out. Get the fire service out and keep out the way.

0:28:240:28:28

-The fumes are absolutely lethal.

-You've had an experience of breathing in fumes.

-Yes.

0:28:280:28:34

When I was a very young fireman I breathed in some plastic fumes.

0:28:340:28:39

-I was in hospital for several weeks.

-Do you remember it happening?

-No.

0:28:390:28:44

I turned over some plastic bottles that were burning

0:28:440:28:48

and ended up in hospital.

0:28:480:28:50

So, take the keys out. Make sure the door opens.

0:28:500:28:54

-Don't open the bonnet. Do you stand near your car?

-No. Away from it.

0:28:540:28:58

And away from the smoke.

0:28:580:29:00

Don't stand down the road in the smoke. Go to the other side.

0:29:000:29:05

-But please remember to call the fire service.

-It's a lot to remember.

0:29:050:29:09

-You've helped me a lot. Gary, thank you.

-You're welcome.

-Nick.

0:29:090:29:14

I've learned something.

0:29:140:29:16

I would have opened the bonnet to give them access.

0:29:160:29:20

Let's return to nine-year-old James, in A&E after suffering two seizures in a week.

0:29:200:29:26

There's one thing on his mind.

0:29:260:29:28

'James looks apprehensive as he waits in hospital

0:29:280:29:33

'to find out why he had a seizure at school.

0:29:330:29:37

'He has a request for his Auntie Cathy.'

0:29:370:29:40

I can't promise you that. There may be.

0:29:430:29:46

What they may do is they may put some numbing gel on your hand

0:29:460:29:51

to do a proper blood test cos that's a tiny one.

0:29:510:29:55

'His dad has now arrived at the hospital.'

0:29:550:29:58

They may pop some numbing gel on there.

0:29:580:30:02

-So I can't feel anything?

-Yeah.

0:30:020:30:04

'Cathy needs to get back on the road.

0:30:070:30:10

'She leaves her nephew in the safe hands of Dr Simon Bell.'

0:30:100:30:13

-This is Mum and Dad?

-Yes.

-Hello!

0:30:130:30:16

-Hello, James.

-Hello.

-You look very well, which is good.

0:30:160:30:20

What's brought you to see us?

0:30:200:30:22

A couple of days ago... Last Tuesday, I got in the car

0:30:220:30:28

and I started having a bit of a fit.

0:30:280:30:30

He was very ashen, lips going blue, lots of dribbling.

0:30:300:30:35

Not like an epileptic fit, it didn't seem like.

0:30:350:30:39

-Not shaking?

-No, but almost like panicking. Not like a...

0:30:390:30:43

Then we took him to Bournemouth.

0:30:430:30:46

'Throughout that first episode, James was unable to speak, but he could remember everything.'

0:30:460:30:52

It happened when I got in the car. My mum opened the door.

0:30:520:30:56

-It was like some sort of explosion happening.

-OK.

0:30:560:31:00

-Nothing has ever happened before?

-No.

-Fit and well?

-Yeah.

0:31:000:31:05

What happened today at school, then?

0:31:050:31:08

-I was at school. I'm sitting down doing my work, yeah?

-Mm-hm.

0:31:080:31:12

When suddenly, I just felt like something came in my mouth, like...

0:31:120:31:17

-A funny taste?

-Yeah. Or a funny feeling in my mouth.

-OK.

0:31:170:31:22

It just seemed to be on my tongue.

0:31:220:31:25

It was only just on my tongue this time.

0:31:250:31:28

I put my hand up to tell the teacher but all I could do was,

0:31:280:31:33

"N..." That sort of thing.

0:31:330:31:35

-So your speech was a bit funny?

-Yeah.

0:31:350:31:39

'There's no problem with James's memory.

0:31:390:31:42

'He can remember it all well and he's very good at telling the doctor exactly what happens.

0:31:420:31:50

'Simon has got all the details so he gets down to a physical check.'

0:31:500:31:54

Out, and stop.

0:31:540:31:56

Don't let me pull them apart.

0:32:000:32:02

-Do you feel me touch you here?

-Yeah.

-And here?

-Yeah.

0:32:020:32:06

Push into my hand.

0:32:070:32:09

OK. That's fine.

0:32:130:32:15

All good. Can't find anything wrong, which is always good.

0:32:150:32:19

The nurse has taken your temperature, heart rate and sugar.

0:32:190:32:23

They're all perfectly normal.

0:32:230:32:25

'Although James is responding well in tests, Simon can't tell him what is going on.'

0:32:250:32:32

How do you feel about coming into hospital?

0:32:320:32:35

-Does that scare you?

-Might do.

-It's not too bad upstairs, is it?

0:32:350:32:40

'He'll have to have more tests to get to the root of the problem.'

0:32:400:32:45

'We'd worry that something's not quite right with his brain.'

0:32:450:32:50

Is this a seizure? Epilepsy?

0:32:500:32:52

Or is there something wrong with his heart?

0:32:520:32:56

Maybe he had a funny rhythm in his heart.

0:32:560:33:00

They're the two organs we're going to concentrate on.

0:33:000:33:03

He's perfectly well now, except it's been three days and he's had two episodes.

0:33:030:33:09

The safest thing is to get further tests on his brain and on his heart.

0:33:090:33:14

We'll get all those, then hopefully come up with a diagnosis and start some treatment.

0:33:140:33:21

James is doing fine but doctors are still trying to find out what's going on. Louise.

0:33:210:33:27

We've all driven past a wrecked car and shuddered at the thought

0:33:270:33:31

of the unfortunate passengers. Well, take a look at this car.

0:33:310:33:35

Shunted by a lorry at 70mph

0:33:350:33:37

then pin-balled between seven other cars.

0:33:370:33:41

It's a wonder anyone survived.

0:33:410:33:43

'Rush hour.

0:33:470:33:49

'Ambulance medics John and Steven have been called out after a nasty collision on the A329.'

0:33:490:33:57

We're going to a multiple car RTC.

0:33:570:33:59

Possibly two people need to be spinal boarded.

0:33:590:34:03

One walking wounded.

0:34:030:34:05

We've got another ambulance on scene and one of our officers.

0:34:050:34:09

So we'll see what we get.

0:34:090:34:12

'What they've got is a scene of destruction.

0:34:120:34:15

'Seven cars have been involved. By far worst off, a Citroen Saxo.

0:34:150:34:20

'The young couple inside are being treated at the edge of the road.

0:34:220:34:27

'Paramedic Heather is with the driver, Lucy.'

0:34:270:34:30

Between 50 to 70 miles per hour.

0:34:300:34:34

The young lady was braking. Rear-end shunted, we believe by the lorry.

0:34:340:34:39

Then she hit the car in front and then a couple of others.

0:34:390:34:43

'It was hit with such force that it pin-balled into several vehicles,

0:34:430:34:47

'spinning over 360 degrees before coming to a standstill.

0:34:470:34:51

'Lucy and her boyfriend got out of the car, but shortly afterwards,

0:34:510:34:56

'they both started to feel the effects of the violent impact.

0:34:560:35:00

'Lucy has pain in her neck. Jay is resting after he collapsed.

0:35:000:35:05

'He finds it difficult to get back to his feet.

0:35:050:35:09

'Heather is taking no chances and wants the pair to stay still

0:35:090:35:13

'before they're put onto spinal boards.'

0:35:130:35:16

Most people get out their cars

0:35:160:35:18

because they've got an adrenaline rush.

0:35:180:35:22

'They don't understand that there may be internal injuries that they won't feel pain for.'

0:35:220:35:29

At the speed Lucy says that she was going and the way she was hit, and the car spun,

0:35:290:35:35

we have to worry that there might be a spinal injury or head injury.

0:35:350:35:40

This collar's going round your neck. It'll be a bit uncomfortable.

0:35:400:35:44

Just going to feed it under. Try and keep your head still, mate.

0:35:440:35:49

-We'll do everything for you.

-It's a bit uncomfortable. That's the idea.

0:35:490:35:54

'The team have to take a "one up, one down" approach with the couple,

0:35:540:35:59

'as Lucy will need to undergo the same procedure while standing.'

0:35:590:36:04

We're going to have to go slowly...

0:36:040:36:07

'Jay's condition is the one the team are most concerned about.'

0:36:070:36:11

He had collapsed, by eye witness accounts. We're not entirely sure why he'd collapsed.

0:36:110:36:17

That could be due to head injury, the vehicle impacting his hip,

0:36:170:36:21

or the fact that he's got some form of concussion.

0:36:210:36:25

'Lucy and Jay arrived in one car,

0:36:250:36:27

'but will leave in two separate ambulances.

0:36:270:36:31

'Jay's worried about his girlfriend. For 20 minutes, he's looked at the sky and can't see if she's OK.

0:36:310:36:38

'Heather reassures him about her condition.'

0:36:380:36:41

'Now Jay's in the ambulance, Heather can check for internal injuries.'

0:36:530:36:58

Just press on your tummy, all right?

0:37:000:37:02

No pain there at all?

0:37:020:37:05

-In there?

-A tiny bit there.

0:37:050:37:08

-Like a pressure pain?

-Yeah.

0:37:080:37:11

OK there?

0:37:110:37:13

-I saw you wiggling your legs around, so there's no pain in your legs?

-No.

0:37:170:37:21

'She checks his recollection of the accident to see if he lost consciousness.'

0:37:210:37:27

-What's the next thing you remember?

-She said, "Get out of the car."

0:37:270:37:32

The next thing I know, I was fallen over on the grass.

0:37:320:37:36

-I tried to stand up.

-Was standing up difficult?

-No.

0:37:360:37:40

-I was just shaking in the knees.

-OK.

0:37:400:37:43

So the first thing you remember when we arrived,

0:37:430:37:46

-well, after the accident, was getting out the car?

-Yeah.

0:37:460:37:50

Before that, hitting the car in front. Nothing between the two?

0:37:500:37:54

-No.

-Right, OK.

0:37:540:37:57

'Jay had pre and post amnesia. He couldn't remember the beginning nor what happened afterwards.'

0:37:570:38:03

That could be down to concussion.

0:38:030:38:05

Where he's had the jolt, the shunt and the spinning, his brain's just shaken inside his head.

0:38:050:38:12

'A concussion can last minutes or it can last days.

0:38:120:38:15

'It depends on the nature of the shaking.'

0:38:150:38:18

'In spite of everything, Jay's found one consolation.'

0:38:180:38:24

-Your car's wrecked.

-That's all right. It's not my car!

0:38:240:38:28

-Whose car is it?

-Hers!

0:38:280:38:30

-HEATHER LAUGHS

-She's got another one at home!

0:38:300:38:34

'Looking at the car, it's lucky Jay is talking at all, let alone joking.

0:38:340:38:39

'He'll be reunited with Lucy in the A&E department

0:38:390:38:43

'where doctors will examine them to rule out potentially serious injuries.'

0:38:430:38:48

In rural areas, like many covered by South Western Ambulance,

0:38:510:38:55

firefighters have to deal with unusual or unique circumstances.

0:38:550:38:59

Agricultural buildings, livestock, farming machinery all provide their own challenges for rescuers.

0:38:590:39:06

Welcome to Wiltshire Rural Rescue. You can see some of the kit.

0:39:060:39:11

We're going to have a chat. Let's start with Tom.

0:39:110:39:14

Come forward.

0:39:140:39:16

-You're an animal specialist.

-Yes.

0:39:160:39:20

There are specific difficulties with animals, aren't there?

0:39:200:39:24

I'm going to start with some footage of some cows in the water.

0:39:240:39:31

Cinching is how you control animals.

0:39:310:39:34

It's a technique of getting a line around an animal,

0:39:340:39:38

negating the need for crews to get into the water.

0:39:380:39:42

It's a safer way of doing it.

0:39:420:39:45

It's directing them without swimming with them.

0:39:450:39:48

How did the cows get in there?

0:39:480:39:50

I believe a rambler left a gate open and the cows went in.

0:39:500:39:55

-And you were able to get them out.

-Yeah.

0:39:550:39:59

-It's important that you understand the animals.

-Yeah.

0:39:590:40:02

They can represent a danger to the firefighters, but also you can lose farmers a lot of money.

0:40:020:40:09

Yeah. It's two-fold.

0:40:090:40:11

Firstly, we don't want them to release animals into a field

0:40:110:40:15

where we've got crews performing operational duties.

0:40:150:40:19

-You don't want a bull around!

-We don't want large animals.

0:40:190:40:23

Secondly, and nearly as importantly from a farmer's point of view,

0:40:230:40:27

we don't want to release veal calves, for instance,

0:40:270:40:31

into a field where there's lush grass and maybe cause internal digestion problems.

0:40:310:40:38

So you have to know your animals. You work with these guys as well.

0:40:380:40:43

Talk to us about the work you do. We've got a bit of kit here.

0:40:430:40:48

This is the inflatable rescue pathway,

0:40:480:40:51

primarily used for creating a stable platform for any operations.

0:40:510:40:56

It can be used on any unstable surface,

0:40:560:40:58

such as ice, mud, sand, slurry.

0:40:580:41:01

We've got footage of you in action with an animal again,

0:41:010:41:06

although you don't work specifically with animals.

0:41:060:41:10

A sheep stuck on an island.

0:41:100:41:12

In that instance, we used the emergency rescue boat.

0:41:120:41:16

It's a bit easier to manoeuvre.

0:41:160:41:18

They had to locate the sheep before they could perform a rescue.

0:41:180:41:23

We can use either the RIB or the pathway.

0:41:230:41:27

-And how did the sheep get there?

-It swam across, actually.

0:41:270:41:31

Why couldn't it swim back?

0:41:310:41:33

It got caught, feet in the water, legs on the island.

0:41:330:41:37

We were talking earlier,

0:41:370:41:40

that a lot of your job is to stop people undertaking dangerous work

0:41:400:41:44

to try and rescue animals.

0:41:440:41:46

Yeah. What we advise people to do is not go after them.

0:41:460:41:50

-Call the water rescue team out.

-Because you guys are specialists.

0:41:500:41:55

-Do you train together regularly?

-Once or twice a month.

0:41:550:41:59

We are going out to so many large animal rescues now, we need to keep on top of our skills.

0:41:590:42:06

Thanks, chaps. You've caused a stir amongst the women in our office.

0:42:060:42:11

They look a lot better out their rubber suits! Are they a bit warm?

0:42:110:42:15

-They are!

-The sun's come out! They're made for being in water.

0:42:150:42:19

Over to you, Louise.

0:42:190:42:22

I've been told lots of times by the fire service, that you should know the way out of your house.

0:42:220:42:29

Not until I put these on did I have any idea how important that was.

0:42:290:42:33

I couldn't even see my hand, let alone a door!

0:42:330:42:37

Join us next time for more Real Rescues.

0:42:370:42:39

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:43:070:43:10

E-mail subtitling[email protected]

0:43:100:43:13

Skateboarders film themselves rescuing a family trapped in a blazing flat, and a car catches fire while parked in the drive.