November 2nd, 2010
02:30 PM ET

Man dubbed hero in Manchester borough blast

Firefighters comb through the rubble of homes destroyed in the Tuesday blast in Salford.

Local media are declaring Vincent Jones a hero after he pulled a woman and her toddler from the wreckage of a collapsed home in a Manchester, England, borough on Tuesday.

At least 14 people, five of them children, were injured in a gas explosion in Salford that destroyed three homes, the Manchester Evening News reported. One of those injured is a 76-year-old woman who suffered 30 percent burns after her house collapsed. City West, which owns the properties, told the newspaper it was working on the houses which exploded.

Leon Barker, the father of a 3-year-old with a suspected skull fracture, cried as he recounted to the paper how the blast, which could be heard 10 miles away, woke him up.

"It was like a dream. One minute I was asleep and the next I was standing on the roof of my house searching through rubble for my kids," he said.

His 8- and 11-year-old children escaped with minor injuries.

Firefighters combing the rubble with sniffer dogs indicated emergency officials were still determining if there were more casualties, the Evening News said.

The mother and child rescued by Jones were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, the paper reported.

Jones and other witnesses were captured in a video posted on YouTube, describing the blast and response.

The 30-year-old man further told the Manchester paper that he ran out of his house after the blast and heard screams coming from one of his neighbor’s properties. He grabbed a ladder and climbed up it as “the whole house was subsiding,” he said.

“There was a lady cowering in the room with her child who looked to be around 2 or 3. I grabbed the baby off her and passed him down the ladder to a couple of the other residents,” he said.

He said they both seemed shaken but OK.

“I waited with them until the paramedics arrived and then they took over. I wouldn't describe myself as a hero. I did what anyone else would have done. I did what I could to help. Probably adrenalin got me through,” Jones told the Manchester Evening News.

soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. PCola Vet

    Tally Ho Vincent Jones.

    November 2, 2010 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Little Billy

      What is a horse shoe? What does a horse shoe do? Are there any horse socks? Is anybody listening to me?

      November 2, 2010 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • UmptySquat

      No LittleBilly, we're not listening.. I'm so sorry.. And thank you Vincent for going in harm's way to help another person, G*d Bless..

      November 2, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
  2. JS

    Wyy do you put the word HERO in single quotes? The guy is more heroic than almost all of the 'heroes' CNN highlights in their regular series.

    November 2, 2010 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marissa

      I am just guessing but the quotes are probably because of the end statement where the "hero" himself says he does not consider himself a hero.

      November 2, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      And what are you doing to make the world better?

      November 2, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Deej

    I am so glad he was there to help the family! Scary situation!

    November 2, 2010 at 5:20 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Rozita

    God Bless Vincent Jones!

    November 2, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  5. SBBlair

    Cheers and accolades to you Vincent Jones! You may not consider yourself a hero but I think your opinion is in the minority here. Praise you sir!

    November 2, 2010 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Steve Johnson

    This guy doesn't have a s-ex tape or reality show...what's he doing in the news???

    (P.S. Kudos to this guy!)

    November 2, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Katelyn

    I truly think Vincent was a hero, putting his life at risk by saving someone in need. Not many people think of themselves as "heroes", they just say that they were doing the right thing. It is the right thing, but by doing the right thing, you're automatically a hero! 🙂

    November 2, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Finally some good news

    Nice to read about people helping each other rather than the usual ledger filled with stories of people being cruel.

    November 2, 2010 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
  9. alienmom

    bravo Mr Jones!!!!

    November 2, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |