Hero who dived into River Tyne during brave rescue honoured at fire service headquarters in Washington
A hero who dived into the River Tyne to save someone’s life has been honoured by fire chiefs for his bravery.
Paul Stainthorpe was running near the river when he saw a person go into the water by the Tyne Bridge.
According to the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Authority, ‘without any due consideration for his own safety’, Mr Stainthorpe jumped in and secured the person until emergency services arrived.
A report for the fire authority added: “On August 27 (2019) a member of the public entered the River Tyne from the Tyne Bridge, Newcastle.
“Mr Stainthorpe having witnessed this whilst running along the quayside, without any due consideration for his own safety, entered the water and preformed a swimming rescue.
“Mr Stainthorpe then assisted the casualty to swim to the riverside where he safely and securely held them both to the ladders on the quayside until the arrival of the emergency services.”
In recognition of his quick thinking, Chief Fire Officer (CFO) Chris Lowther presented him with the fire service’s Award for Meritorious Action at the brigade HQ in Washington.
Accepting the prize, Mr Stainthorpe said: “Can I congratulate Chris [CFO Lowther] on the competence of his staff on the day.
“I’m sure he is well aware of their competence already, as we all are, but I was very impressed.”
CFO Lowther said: “Mr Stainthorpe showed great courage and compassion on that morning.
“This type of water rescue can be extremely difficult even for trained firefighters, due to the river current, debris and the temperature of the water.
“The casualty was very lucky that Mr Stainthorpe was there as without his quick response, there could well have been a tragic end to this story.
“I’d like to personally thank him for his bravery and commitment to public safety.”