Ben Hill is a reporter for The New Zealand Herald

Man pulls elderly neighbour to safety from house fire

Aidan Teao pulled an elderly man from his burning house in Piopio Place. Photo / John van de Ven
Aidan Teao pulled an elderly man from his burning house in Piopio Place. Photo / John van de Ven

Two next-door neighbours generations apart had an unusual introduction when one pulled the other from a house fire in Tokoroa.

Aidan Teao, 21, was at home at Piopio Place when he heard glass smash over the fence.

"I turned around and saw smoke, and then I just sprinted over and helped them out."

He saw his elderly neighbour was in the garage, so he went in to escort him away from the blaze.

"There was lots of smoke, he couldn't breathe," Mr Teao said.

"I didn't really know him, it was the first time I had properly met him.

"I didn't want anything bad to happen or anything. Of course I was wondering if I was going to get hurt ... he was a bit grouchy, I was trying to pull him out but he was telling me not to rush him, all he was worried about was his scooter."

Mr Teao said the fire was only five metres away from the pair.

"I felt a lot of heat, but now I'm calm as, it's just lucky that everyone's out of the house."

A Fire Service spokesman said they attended the fire yesterday afternoon, which was "well involved" when they arrived.

Two crews and two trucks arrived, but had to call two more trucks from Putaruru to combat the blaze.

- NZ Herald

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