Bravery award for car blaze rescuer

Bravery award for Catherine Neary who pulled a man from his burning car after a crash. Catherine is pictured with her daughter Agatha and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue staff at Maltby fire station.
Bravery award for Catherine Neary who pulled a man from his burning car after a crash. Catherine is pictured with her daughter Agatha and South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue staff at Maltby fire station.

A woman who pulled an injured driver from his crashed car seconds before it burst into flames has been given a fire service award.

Catherine Neary ran to the stricken motorist’s aid after seeing his Vauxhall Corsa narrowly miss her BMW and plough into an electricity pylon on the A631 near Scotch Spring Lane in Maltby on 9th June last year.

With flames coming from the Corsa’s engine, the 43-year-old dragged the dazed man from the vehicle before fire quickly engulfed the car.

The casualty, who was aged in his 20s, was treated at the scene for minor injuries before being taken to Rotherham Hospital.

Catherine and her 13 year-old daughter Agatha, who also witnessed the rescue drama, made a special visit to Maltby Fire Station.

On that visit Catherine, who lives in Tickhill, was awarded with a Certificate of Appreciation by South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue.

Speaking about the night in June last year, Catherine said she was glad she acted so quickly.

“The car hit the pylon with tremendous force, and I could see flames coming from the bonnet almost straight away,” she said.

“The driver was very dazed but thankfully I managed to get him out of the car just in time because just after that the fire spread very, very quickly.”

“I’m just thankful I acted so quickly as I’m not sure the driver would have been able to get out by himself.”

“It’s really nice to be recognised by the fire service with this award,” she added.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus attended the scene and doused the flames with water but the car was completely destroyed.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue area manager Dave Kiddy credited Catherine’s quick thinking and actions with saving the driver’s life.

“What Catherine did that day was extremely brave and heroic, and we are in no doubt that her actions saved the man’s life,” he said.