A WINDOW cleaner was brought back to earth by firefighters after he got trapped on his own roof.
John Kirk, 64, of Ebor Street, South Shields, decided to boldly go up a ladder to attempt to fix water leaking through his roof on Sunday evening.
But his enterprise soon saw him shouting from the rooftops – for help – when he found what goes up doesn’t always come down.
He found the ladder he was using was shaking under his weight as he attempted to get back down. After he called out for help, a neighbour rang for emergency assistance.
Mr Kirk, a father-of-two and grandad-of-one, married to Margaret, had attempted the job as roof damage wasn’t covered by his insurers.
Firefighters turned out after 6pm, with a ladder more suited to the task and brought a relieved Mr Kirk back down to safety.
Mr Kirk, back on a firmer footing, said: “The firefighters were a Godsend. I thank them very much.
“It was just getting dark and I thought ‘I’m here for the night’. They asked me my name and I said it’s Kirk, like Captain Kirk.
“I asked to be beamed up, but Scotty never came. I was up there for about 15 minutes and the fire service were here only five minutes.” Mr Kirk decided to get on the roof due to concerns over the cost of getting a builder.
He added: “Water was getting in. We’ve got the house up for sale so I thought I’ll have a go at fixing it. I think we’ll move into a bungalow – I’m sick of heights.”
Mr Kirk has vowed there’ll be no repeat of the rescue, adding: “I wouldn’t recommend it.”
Neil Hanlon, crew manager at South Shields Fire Station, said: “We would always advise carrying out something like this in daylight. There should also be more than one person, so somebody can hold the ladder.
“The ladder became unstable and he couldn’t get down. Once we arrived and pitched up our ladder, we were able to get him down safely soon after.”