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Three-year-old saves Saltdean charity shop from fire with his 'spidey senses'
The three-year-old son of a firefighter saved a charity shop from a devastating blaze after smelling smoke from a burning light fitting.
Eli Burns-King was browsing for toys with his dad in Saltdean’s Home Project Centre when he raised the alarm.
And while 40-year-old Matthew King puts his son’s heroics down to his safety training, young Eli has a different explanation: “spidey senses”.
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Mr King said: “I’m very proud of him.
“I’ve always tried to teach him to be on the lookout for signs of danger and I think that has hopefully rubbed off.
“He’s into his Spiderman though, so he thinks he’s got Spiderman powers.”
The pair were looking for toys in the Longridge Avenue charity shop yesterday morning.
Within a couple of minutes of entering the store, little Eli turned to his firefighter of 16-years dad, and said: “Daddy I think I can smell burning.”
Unable, to smell smoke he carried on with his shopping before looking to the ceiling. He said: “I couldn’t believe it, there was smoke pouring out of the light fitting.
“With the shop full of clothes it could have turned into a serious fire; he managed to smell the smoke just in time.”
Volunteer shopkeeper John Kirby ran out the back and switched off the power before carefully removing the faulty fitting.
He said: “I understand his dad is a firefighter so I think he must have cottoned on to some of his knowledge. Thankfully he brought it to our attention very quickly and I managed to shut off the power and remove the fitting.
“It was red hot when I tried to take it out. He almost certainly saved us from a fire – I can’t thank him enough.
“It proves youngsters don’t walk round with their heads in the clouds.”
For his efforts, Mr Kirby gave the youngster a toy for helping save the store.
Mr King added: “He could well be a firefighter of the future. I’m extremely proud of him.
“I’ve been to many jobs similar to this. The fitting can melt away the plastic and fall to the ground.
“With so many clothes around it could have been serious.”
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