Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Cameron thanked for calling 999 after safety talk at school

A Halstead boy from The Ramsey Academy has been thanked by Essex County Fire and Rescue Service for calling 999 when he saw smoke coming from a motorhome.

Cameron, who is 11-years-old was putting the rubbish out at around 5pm in Halstead on January 6, when he heard a smoke alarm going off in his next door neighbour’s house. Cameron then noticed smoke coming from a motorhome parked on his neighbour’s driveway.

He immediately ran inside to tell his parents that there was a fire. Cameron then called 999, giving his address and a precise description of what was happening next door.

Education Officer Andrea Adams, who works in the Service’s Community Safety team, had recently given a safety talk to Cameron and his fellow students at The Ramsey Academy in Halstead. Andrea had covered amongst other topics, how and when to call 999 and what to say to the Control Operator.

Watch Manager Steve Byrne from Halstead Fire Station explains what happened on the night of the fire:

“The motorhome was parked just one metre away from a house and flames were coming out of the windows and the top of the vehicle.

“Cameron’s quick thinking and actions meant that we were alerted without delay, from the time Cameron called 999 to us arriving was nine minutes. When we arrived the rear cab area of the motorhome was 100 percent alight, but luckily the fire had not yet spread to the fuel tank, which was full, or to the house.

“There were also gas cylinders in the motorhome that we were able to remove before the fire and heat got to them. The motorhome was used by a couple from Devon as a permanent home, they were visiting family, and there was a lot of valued items and memories within the vehicle that we saved.

“The crews managed to control the fire quickly without any damage to the house. Another five minutes and this would have been a different story to tell.

“What Cameron had learnt and remembered from Andrea’s visit, as well as his quick thinking and actions, saved his neighbour’s house and probably his own home, and prevented possible serious injury to the occupants.”

Cameron received a certificate of recognition and a service badge for his actions, which were presented to him at his school by Andrea and Steve.

Steve added: “Cameron also gets lots of thanks from his very grateful neighbours. His parents and school are extremely proud of him, as he should be of himself. Cameron and his parents have also accepted my invitation to visit the fire station on a training night to meet the crew and have a tour, as a special thank you.”

Well done to Cameron for raising the alarm and to the crews from Halstead and Sible Hedingham for extinguishing the fire.

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