Northern Ireland news

Video: Man praised after pulling unconscious driver from burning car in Co Down

The scene of the crash on the Portaferry Road near Newtownards on Saturday morning. Picture from PSNI
John Monaghan

A MAN has been praised by police after pulling an unconscious driver from a burning car in Co Down.

The car caught fire after a collision with a van on the Portaferry Road near Newtownards at 7.55am on Saturday.

One person is in a stable condition at the Ulster Hospital while another - whose condition is unclear - was taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital.

William McMullen, who made a dash to the burning car, said he does not "see myself as a hero".

"I've heard people say I should get a Spirit of Northern Ireland Award, but I don't see myself as a hero. I just did what I could," he told The Sunday Life.

"I'm not interested in any recognition until I hear the young lad is safe. That is my main concern. I want to know that he is recovering."

Praising Mr McMullen, a police officer wrote on PSNI Ards' Facebook page: "I shook the hand of a very brave man today."

"I know we often say that people could have saved lives but the gentleman concerned today really stepped up to the mark.

"Seconds after this collision the car burst into flames with the unconscious driver still inside.

"Risking his own safety the gentleman managed to pull him free of the car and to safety," the officer added.

In addition to Mr McMullen's efforts, a passing casualty doctor assisted two ambulance crews and a doctor at the scene.

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