A MAN hailed as a hero for pulling his neighbour out of a house engulfed by smoke from a fierce chip pan fire last night said he was just doing what anybody else would have done.

Fire chiefs said 49-year-old Chris Halson saved the life of his 20-year-old neighbour Tom Ferguson by dragging his unconscious body out of the house in Dall Street, Burnley.

Dall Street

Chris was waiting for a takeaway delivery with a friend at his house three doors down from the scene of the blaze at about 11pm when he noticed a smell of burning.

He said: “I ran out the front and saw the smoke coming from the house.

"My friend pushed the front door open but the house was full of thick black smoke, I couldn’t see anything.”

Chris’s cousin, who lives opposite, brought out a wet flannel to cover Chris' face and he crawled into the property, where he found Tom collapsed in the hall way.

He said: “I could feel the heat when I was inside, it was intense and Tom was covered in sweat.

"I started to pull him out but the smoke was taking all my energy and another neighbour had to help get him out the door.”

At first it was feared Tom’s mum Lynn may have been in the house but she was found safe at a friends.

Lynn said: “I can’t thank Chris enough for what he did, he saved Tom’s life for sure.”

But Chris said: “I’m not a hero at all, anybody would have done what I did and I had help from other people on the street. Instinct just took over.”

Burnley watch manager Steve Harrison said: “No doubt about it, he saved the man’s life."

Tom was treated at Royal Blackburn Hospital for smoke inhalation and was due to be released yesterday.