Off duty officer saves toddler from burning home

Fire erupted in Clayton Heights coach house trapping toddler inside. Her grandmother was able to get out, both taken to hospital.

The bravery, courage, and quick response of an off-duty RCMP officer is credited with saving the life of a two-year-old girl from a burning house in Clayton Heights last week.

Surrey RCMP dog handler Sgt. Derek King was out for a walk Jan. 8, when he saw smoke and flames erupting from a home in the 19000 block of 71 Avenue in Surrey.

King immediately began knocking on the front door of the home, where the toddler’s grandmother was able to tell him the little girl was trapped inside.

King wasn’t wearing any protective gear, but that didn’t stop him from conducting a search for the girl.

Her cries for help enabled him to find his way through the smoke to the room. He was able to scoop her up and bring her outside to safety.

“It’s clear that this incident would have had a very tragic outcome,” Surrey Fire Chief Len Garis said. “But thanks to Sgt. King’s bravery, he saved a young child from serious injury or worse.”

The toddler and grandmother were taken to Langley Memorial Hospital, where they were treated for smoke inhalation.

The fire damaged a house and coach house. Crews arrived to find the back sides of both buildings on fire, necessitating a second alarm for additional firefighters.

The cause of the fire hasn’t been determined, but does not appear to be suspicious, Garis said.

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