A DOG called Lucky lived up to his name when he was
rescued by firefighters after a house fire in Tyldesley over the
bank holiday weekend.
In the same incident fire crews brought two hamsters back to
life by giving them oxygen.
Three crews from Atherton and Leigh were called to the house on
St George's Street at 3pm on Friday, June 1, after off duty
firefighter Gareth Ellis spotted smoke on his way home.
He explained: "I was turning right and spotted a load of smoke
coming out of an upstairs window at the back of a row of
"I raced around to the front of the house on St George's and
there was even more smoke, so I shouted through the letterbox - and
rang 999. It didn't seem like there was anyone in but I told the
control room that I couldn't be 100 per cent sure."
Unbeknown to Gareth he had stumbled across a fire caused by an
electrical fault in the kitchen of the house.
Because it was unclear whether anyone was inside, Greater
Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) sent three fire engines
so that crews could search the house for people on their
As fire crews arrived and were breaking into the house to search
the house and fight the fire, Julie Hughes and her children Greg
(15) and Bethany (13) were arriving home at the same time.
Julie said: "I was in the car with the kids and my mum and we
saw the fire engines race ahead - we were joking about how it might
be my house.
"I just couldn't believe it when I saw it was, I just abandoned
my car and we were all really worried about Lucky."
Watch Manager Ian Gardener said: "The young lad came round the
the front of our fire engine and was very worried about their pet
"When the lads brought him out he was black because he was
covered in soot. We found him cowering in the kitchen, which is
where the fire started behind the washing machine.
"To say he was lucky is an understatement so his name is very
But while crews wearing breathing apparatus were putting the
fire out, they found a pet hamster inside a cage in the
"To be honest, the hamster was completely motionless so we
thought it was dead," explained the Watch Manager.
"We got another hamster out of an upstairs bedroom and it was
unconscious as well - both looked like they were goners.
"We made a make-shift oxygen tent out of a small plastic bag and
gave both hamsters a small amount of oxygen and they both came
round, we didn't think it was going to work, but it did - he kids
seemed happy anyway."
Julie said: "I just want to thank the firefighters so much they
saved the dog's life, and the hamsters - I mean one of them was in
the kitchen and her water bottle on the cage had melted, I just
don't know how they survived it - I'm so grateful to the
"I didn't know one of them lived nearby and he phoned 999 - it's
amazing - I am just counting my lucky stars because I usually have
the washing machine on at night, things could have been so
"I did have a working smoke alarm - everyone should but for
saving Lucky and the hamsters we are all so grateful to the fire
service - they were brilliant."