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Hero braves blaze to save man

CRASH HERO: Wade Davidson, 24, gets a hug from girlfriend Kaitlin Reardon after a saving a man’s life.
CRASH HERO: Wade Davidson, 24, gets a hug from girlfriend Kaitlin Reardon after a saving a man’s life. Dave Noonan

WADE Davidson ran past onlookers to pull an injured 47-year-old driver out of his burning utility after it crashed into a tree in Kearneys Spring.

Seconds after Mr Davidson dragged the injured man away from the crash, the Holden Maloo ute burst into flames.

Mr Davidson told The Chronicle he and his girlfriend Kaitlin Reardon, both 24, were woken by the screeching of tyres at the intersection of Nelson St and West St about 12.30am on Saturday.

The pair was jolted out of bed when they heard the impact of the utility slamming into the tree.

Mr Davidson told Miss Reardon to phone the ambulance while he ran outside to see a cloud of dust and smoke.

"I saw a couple of people outside their units (watching) but they weren't doing anything.

"I ran over and as I got closer the fire got more intense.

"He was in a daze leaning against the steering wheel and everything was on fire.

"He was sitting there getting burnt so I reached in to undo his seatbelt, but it wasn't on.

"I pulled him out of the window. His eyes were closed and he didn't even know he was on fire."

At that moment, the man's fiancée arrived at the scene and the pair used their bare hands to pat out the flames.

Mr Davidson then dragged the man away from the ute, worried it might explode.

"I grabbed him by the arms and started dragging him away but bits of his arm skin were coming off in my palms.

"His back was burnt really bad, plus he was burnt on his head, arms (and chest).

"Once I pulled him away, it (the ute) was fully engulfed so I was happy I got him out in time."

Mr Davidson said the crash was confronting, but he was shocked that no other onlookers or passers-by tried to help.

Miss Reardon said she was proud her boyfriend had saved a man's life.

"I was really worried he was going to get hurt, but he's not the type of person that wouldn't help," she said.

"The guy he pulled out was twice the size of him- I thought that was pretty amazing."

Mr Davidson sustained minor burns to his fingers.

The driver sustained burns to at least 25% of his body.

Topics:  car fire, fire, hero


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