Schoolboy hero Jack Rees has been praised by his parents and fire crews for his life-saving actions when a serious chimney blaze broke out at his home.
The 11-year-old raised the alarm when a fire started in his family’s house in Walmley and he also alerted neighbours sleeping next door.
Jack’s quick-thinking enabled his parents to call firefighters and he managed to wake the elderly couple who were unaware of the blaze, which could easily have engulfed their home.
The Fairfax school pupil’s mum Angela said without her son’s bravery, the outcome could have been much worse. “If Jack hadn’t have acted in the way he did, our home and the house next door would have been an inferno,” she said.
She explained that Jack had got out of bed at about 2am on Tuesday because he smelled smoke.
The youngster went downstairs in the family’s semi-detached house and immediately raised the alarm when he found a room filled with smoke.
He woke younger sister Tara, his parents and the family’s pet dogs, before rushing to the neighbouring property and alerting the occupants.
“We were kicking the door and shouting for them to wake up,” said Mrs Rees.
The blaze had started in the chimney where a log burner heater is situated directly below Jack’s bedroom and flames had touched the wooden joists under the floor.
Jack’s father John, a mechanic, was treated for second degree burns to his fingers at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital. “Adrenalin just took over and my husband tried to put out the flames before the fire engines arrived.
“He was treated overnight at the hospital but his fingers were badly burned.” she said.
Smoke alarms in both homes failed to activate because fumes were escaping up the chimney.
Firefighter Antony Worthington said: “Jack did brilliantly. The Watch Commander said he’d done well and listened to his fire safety advice. He should be proud of what he’s done.
“If it wasn’t for him it would have been a lot worse.”
Mrs Rees now thinks her son should be considered for a bravery award.
“The fire crews said he was a hero, but his actions did not surprise me because he is such a sensible lad.
“However, it has affected him because it was a very traumatic situation for a young boy.
“He has been very quiet since it happened and I think it would boost his confidence tremendously if he was nominated for some sort of award to recognise his bravery,” Mrs Rees added.
Sister Tara, 10, said she was very proud of her elder brother.
“He was very brave,” she said.