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Hero who dragged unconscious man from smoking car in Aberdeen up for bravery award

Michael Byrne.
Michael Byrne.

A heroic Aberdeen dad who pulled an unconscious driver from a smoke-filled car has been recognised for his efforts.

Former commando Michael Byrne raced to the aid of the man inside the red Jaguar after it collided with an Audi on Market Street on March 21.

Fearing that the car may go up in flames, the 49-year-old checked for a pulse and then dragged the man to safety, before checking on the driver of the white Audi and her son.

Together they wrapped the youngster in a blanket to comfort him, and Mr Byrne stayed at the scene until help arrived.

Now in light of his heroic efforts, Mr Byrne has reached the final 10 nominees in the Amplifon Awards for Brave Britons 2021 Act Of Courage category.

The crash on Market Street. Picture supplied by Michael Byrne.

Explaining his actions on the day, Mr Byrne said it had been “quite a big smack”.

He said: “It happened in front of me on a weekend morning coming back from the beach area on Market Street.

“When I saw smoke in the red car that’s when I came to think I better go and help because I wasn’t sure if the car was going to go up in flames or not.

“He was a big guy and when I opened the car door there was smoke coming out around the dash, white thick smoke. He was unconscious.

“First aid tells you not to move an injured casualty but in the military, you worry about yourself first.

‘I knew what I had to do’

“If I moved him and he ended up paralysed, well, he would have been alive.

“If I hadn’t done it he could have been toast so I just got him out.”

Mr Byrne said that he kept speaking to his casualty and he regained consciousness by the time others arrived to help.

“I am ex-military and first aid trained so it was just a natural reaction that I would have done for anybody – any day of the week,” he added.

“I am sure anybody would have done it, I was just the first one there.

“I just knew that I had to get there as quick as I could just encase the car went up in flames, it was very logistic, I knew what I had to do and just went and done it.”

Following the crash, the Jaguar driver suffered minor injuries.

Mr Byrne has reached the final 10 in a selection stage for the Act Of Courage Amplifon Brave Britons awards – out of 300 nominations chosen by the public.

Four finalists will be selected and the winner announced at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, October 5.

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