Man receives bravery award for selflessly saving two people

Man receives bravery award for selflessly saving two people

Paramedic Kate presenting award to William Miller

A real-life hero who jumped into a canal to save the lives of two people involved in a car crash has been presented with a bravery award by EMAS.

Billy Miller, 42, a carpenter from Barton-under-Needwood, was driving across Swarkestone Bridge on at 4.30pm on Wednesday when the crash happened a few cars ahead of him and a car fell into the canal.

Billy got out of his car, ran down to the canal edge and swam out to the car to rescue the driver and a man in the water.

Today he was presented with a Bravery Award from EMAS for his heroic and selfless actions.

Kate Brown, Paramedic and Acting Team Leader, helped manage the incident at the scene and was impressed by Billy's actions.

She said: "I've been in the ambulance service 15 years and I can count on one hand the number of times people have done something like this. There are not many people in this day and age that would do what Billy did.

"He is a real life hero.

"His actions made a massive difference. He made our lives 10 times easier that night because the patients were out of the water when we arrived so we could begin effective treatment. Without him it could have been a very different story. 

"Billy might not think he is brave, but we do."

Billy explained that once he reached the car in the water, he could see there was a woman trapped in the driver's seat and the water was rising up her body.

He said: "I knew I had to do something. I shouted for someone to throw me a brick and I smashed the passenger window.

"I got her to shuffle towards me and then I pulled her out and got her in a cradle type hold. It was only when I turned around that I realised there was another man face down in the water. Other people were turning him onto his side.

"I passed the woman to the people on the bank and then helped to lift the man out.

Billy then got work clothes out of his car to cover the patients and keep them warm.

He also made sure that there were no further casualties by using his car to block the hole left in the railings by the crash.                                         

He added: "I don't think I am brave. I would do the same again."